Baruch Spinoza


A haze of gold, the Occident lights up
The window. Now, the assiduous manuscript
Is waiting, weighed down with the infinite.
Someone is building God in a dark cup.
A man engenders God. He is a Jew
With saddened eyes and lemon-colored skin;
Time carries him the way a leaf, dropped in
A river, is borne off by waters to
Its end. No matter. The magician moved
Carves out his God with fine geometry;
From his disease, from nothing, he's begun
To construct God, using the word. No one
Is granted such prodigious love as he;
The love that has no hope of being loved.


         Spanish; trans. Willis Barnstone


Jorge Luis Borges, Spanish, trans. Willis Barnstone, Selected Poems, ed. Alexander Coleman, Viking Penguin, 1999.