Walking the bridge I count my steps from one end to the other, from Slovakia to Hungary, Štúrovo to Esztergom. 700 exactly. On the way back I observe the bridge, its flow of cars and human traffic – the usual European and Asian models; leopard skin tops and traffic red bottoms, sensible tread and treacherous spikes. It seems everyone has a bag or camera or child in hand. Then this man in black (there always is one) carrying himself as if basking in some other worldly climate, arms lax by his sides, moving without the gesticulations of a tourist. Singular, un-distractible. To his left and right the river en route from the Black Forest to the Black Sea. How many times has he retraced this path? No border control. No check points. Free to move between countries and lives, less like a man, more like a selkie, waiting for the form of a man to willingly fall his way.

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