Explication Of "Ars Poetica" By Jorge Luis Borges English Essay

439 words - 2 pages

In Ars Poetica – Latin for “the art of poetry” – Borges essentially speaks to the reader about the nature of time, along with setting out to expand one’s definition of poetry and its relation to time. In the final stanza, Borges references Heraclitus, saying that art is “also like the river with no end / That flows and remains and is the mirror of one same / Inconstant Heraclitus,” (Borges, 25-27) In Plato’s dialogue Cratylus, Plato paraphrases Heraclitus, stating that he once said “all things are in motion and nothing at rest; he compares them to the stream of a river, and says that you cannot go into the same water twice.” (Jowett, 78) This reference, nestled away in the final stanza, is doubly important when contextualized with the opening lines of the poem, “To look at the river made of time and water / And remember that time is another river, / To know that we are lost like the river” (1-3). Here, Borges is essentially stating that time is akin to a river, constantly flowing in one direction without any seeming end. Furthermore, he also means that human beings are “lost like the river” – that is, only capable of flowing through time in one direction, i.e, forwards.
How Borges relates time...

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