Zbigniew Herbert

(29 October 1924 – 28 July 1998 / Lvov)

Zbigniew Herbert Poems

41. A Ballad That We Do Not Perish 1/3/2003
Best Poem of Zbigniew Herbert

Mr. Cogito And The Imagination

Mr. Cogito never trusted
tricks of the imagination

the piano at the top of the Alps
played false concerts for him

he didn't appreciate labyrinths
the Sphinx filled him with loathing

he lived in a house with no basement
without mirrors of dialectics

jungles of tangled images
were not his home

he would rarely soar
on the wings of metaphor
and then he fell like Icarus
into the embrace of the Great Mother

he adored tautologies
explanations
idem per idem

that a bird is a bird
slavery means slavery
a knife is a ...

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Nothing Special

nothing special
boards paint
nails paste
paper string

mr artist
builds a world
not from atoms
but from remnants

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