came to me in stamps.
Magyar Posta ice-skaters, delicate
as Empire porcelain, a fish, an astronaut
and rocket, a silvery boy on 1960s skis.
I understood only difference.
Now, flying home from Budapest,
I touch the pages of my poems, freshly minted
in translation. Now I really don’t get them,
but did I ever? The words will make me
briefly native to a coffee-slugging morning reader
on the Váci út, who may not understand,
even in his own tongue.
The lines shimmer as night slips
through the tilting crowded cabin. Again
I press fingers to page, blind, as if by touch
I could capture a fish, an astronaut, a rocket,
or those elegant, ice-cutting skaters.
Outside, clouds I cannot see
busily translate country to country.