What can I hold you with?

What can I hold you with?
I offer you lean streets, desperate sunsets, the moon of the jagged suburbs.
I offer you the bitterness of a man who has looked
long and long at the lonely moon.
I offer you my ancestors, my dead men, the ghosts
that living men have honoured in bronze
my father's father killed in the frontier of
Buenos Aires, two bullets through his lungs,
bearded and dead, wrapped by his soldiers in
the hide of a cow; my mother's grandfather
--just twentyfour-- heading a charge of
three hundred men in Peru, now ghosts on
vanished horses.
I offer you whatever insight my books may hold,
whatever manliness or humour my life.
I offer you the loyalty of a man who has never
been loyal.

I offer you that kernel of myself that I have saved,
somehow --the central heart that deals not
in words,
traffics not with dreams, and is
untouched by time, by joy, by adversities.

I offer you the memory of a yellow rose seen at
sunset, years before you were born.
I offer you explanations of yourself, theories about
yourself, authentic and surprising news of

I can give you my loneliness, my darkness, the
hunger of my heart
; I am trying to bribe you
with uncertainty, with danger, with defeat.

Jorge Luis Borges

Compañeros de Ruta