Borges fictions are dreams- and like dreams illogical and flimsy- which would matter less if they didn't make such a parade of their logic. They frighten us with their inescapable labyrinths- only the labyrinths are full of holes.
It's a familiar 20th century trick- and with distance we're getting to see just what a trick it is: you create fiction from which you wilfully omit everything that gives life colour, then complain about how life is a prison. It's like that line of Beckett's, "They give birth above an open grave". Yeah, but what about all the stuff in between? Nabokov had a smack at this literary miserabilism in his early novel, Invitation to a Beheading- where a guy who's been stewing away in prison a la Kafka suddenly comes round and realises that the walls are cardboard and he can kick them down.
I can't help noticing- indeed, Borges openly acknowledges the debt- how much he owes to G.K Chesterton. And not only in matters of mood and style. The plot of Death and the Compass is- for one example among many- merely a variant on that of The Mystery of the Blue Cross. The difference is that Chesterton's labyrinths are built to be broken out of, where Borges always shuts the door behind us with a fateful clang. I know which version of reality I prefer- and believe to be closer to the truth.
I enjoy Borges. His little stories are very moreish. As art there's a lot to be said for them. Certain images- that infinite library for instance- are indelible. The mistake would be- and for many people has been- to suppose they have anything to do with life. Writing about labyrinths doesn't ipso facto make you profound.