The White Deer
From what wild ballad of English green
or Persian miniature, from what withdrawn
place of days and nights no longer seen
came the white deer that I dreamed at dawn?
It crossed the lawn, a momentary reflection,
and vanished in the afternoon’s golden tide.
A graceful thing, half made of recollection,
half made of forgetting: a deer with one side.
The gods that rule this strange life, it seems,
have let me dream you, but not make you mine.
But maybe in some future bend of time
I will find you again, white deer of my dreams.
For I too am a dream, and will soon be gone,
like the white and the green of my dream at dawn.
Jorge Luis Borges
Translated from Spanish by Paul Weinfield, © 2016
Photo by Rimel Neffati