Friday, August 3, 2018

Borges / Milonga of Albornoz

Milonga of Albornoz

by Jorge Luis Borges
Translated by Christopher Mulrooney

Someone already counted the days,
Someone already knows the hour,
Someone with Whom there are
Neither premotions nor demur.

Albornoz walks by whistling
An Entre Ríos milonga;
Under the brim of his chambergo
His eyes see the morning,

The morning of this day
Of eighteen-hundred ninety;
Down in the Retiro
They've already stopped counting

Loves and cardgames
Till dawn and tangles
Of iron with sergeants,
Kith and strangers.

Well-sworn amongst them are
More than one tough and more than one rogue;
At a streetcorner on the Southside
A knife is waiting for him.

Not one knife but three,
Before day's lightening,
They were all on top of him
And the man was himself defending.

Somebody's steel entered his chest,
Nor did his face once move;
Alejo Albornoz died
As if it was nothing at all to him.

I think that he would like
To know presently his story
Continues in a milonga. Time
Is oblivion and memory.

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