Juan Lopez and John Ward

Nga Jorge Luis Borges


They lived in a strange age.

The planet had been partitioned into different countries, each armed with loyalties, cherished memories, and an unquestionably heroic past; with laws, grievances, and their own peculiar mythologies; with bronze busts of great men, anniversaries, demagogues, and symbols. This division, the labor of cartographers, was good for starting wars.

Lopez was born in the city by the motionless river; Ward, in the outskirts of the city once walked by Father Brown. He had studied Spanish in order to read Don Quixote.

The other professed a love of Conrad, who hadbeen revealed to him in a classroom on Viamonte Avenue.

They might have been friends, but they only saw each other once, face-to-face, somewhere down in those too-famous islands, and each of them was Cain, each Abel.

They were buried together, decayed in the snow. These events took place in an age we cannot understand.

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