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Budapest Ave Maria

Jesuit Church of the Sacred Heart
wrought iron & stone off Maria utca
somewhat small and obviously old
simple, but of course in a Catholic sort of way
no candles to light, no collections either
certainly not a dark place
but one of pure beauty, brightness of compassion

The bells for Mass were ringing
even as I approached
and although my Hungarian nightmare
already had begun,
in smiling advance my heart well knew:
Budapest is a splendid city
eventually to be stranded in.

EDDIE WOODS
March 31st 1997

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