(Note: These poems are in fact by Kenneth Koch and were originally published under the name “Jorge Guinhieme,” purportedly a major Argentinean poet, but actually a character of Koch's invention. This group of poems would later appear in Koch’s 1969 collection The Pleasures of Peace.)
Jorge Guinhieme, a leading writer and, according to many, founder, of the hasosistic school of Argentine poetry, was horn in Buenos Aires in 1887. These tributes to him, along with this selection of his new poems, were originally published in Milagro (XCVII - 4) earlier this year. Guinhieme’s volumes includeByways (1913), Hombre (1930), Otros Cristos (1957), and his continuing life work, The Streets of Buenos Aires.
One may wish to slaughter or to save the bull—but first one must master the cape. With the politics I differ; for the man I feel nothing but love. Without him I might never have been a poet. His esthetic discoveries were powerful enough to enable me to dispute with him to the death in an arena where the combat is eternal: the arena of poetry.