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628   Jorge Luis Borges  $1000 $1465 $1612 5 You must login to place a bid.

#628 - Jorge Luis Borges

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His early poem “Elegia de Palermo,” capturing the rough-and-tumble barrio of his youth


Crisply-penned handwritten poem, in Spanish, signed at the conclusion, “Jorge Luis Borges 1926,” entitled “Elegia de Palermo.” Poem is dedicated to Argentinian poet Francisco ‘Paco’ Luis Bernárdez. Borges writes out 48 lines of the poem, in part: “Este es una elegía / de cuando los portones de Palermo hacían sombra / y a cualquier bocacalle le salía un compadrito. / Esta es una elegía / que se acuerda de un largo resplandor agachado / que las tardes derechas daban a los baldíos / Este es una elegía / para unos barriletes que hacían fiesta en el cielo / charro papelerío / por donde lo escalaron al cielo los domingos!” A small tear to top edge and a couple of minor spots, otherwise fine condition.

After spending the first fifteen years of his life in Palermo, a poorer suburb of Buenos Aires, Borges and his family relocated to Geneva to avoid the political unrest of World War I (in which Argentina remained controversially neutral). When he returned a decade later, he found his home changed: the hard-edged, seedy taverns and sudden eruptions of violence that had impressed the young boy were replaced with chic restaurants and wealthy immigrants—but Buenos Aires and the beloved Palermo of his youth remained a key feature of Borges’s work throughout his career. He published his first collection of poetry, Fervor de Buenos Aires, in 1923, and began contributing to the avant-garde review Martín Fierro, for which Francisco Luis Bernardez also wrote. This poem, written in 1926 and originally titled “Elegy of Palermo,” appeared in Borges’s third book of poetry in 1929 (Cuaderno San Martín) under the title “Elegy of the Gates.” Beautifully capturing the shadowy city, where at ‘any intersection you find a hoodlum,’ this stunning handwritten poem to a fellow Argentine poet is a highly desirable and rare piece—only the third Borges we have offered, and by far the finest. Pre-certified John Reznikoff/PSA/DNA.

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