POEM: Budapest

I know you best by the gray of your winters

when road salt coats the sidewalks

and a witch of wind rides down the Danube

whistling around pedestrians on your broad bridges

      — except there are no pedestrians

                  — save for me —

river crossers huddle in yellow trams

or pack into the Metro that rolls under the river

I know your beauty can be unsullied

I’ve seen a Budapest in bloom,

under blue skies and cotton clouds

But your gray days lend a distinguished air

a melancholic miracle is birthed from gloom

a sweep of story,

 a piece of poetry,

that would move a stoic to tears

And escape is always close at hand

for Kürtőskalács fires sunshine in my mind