Whimsical Sketches 2 – State Library of Victoria – Joy Reid

Les Voleurs D’or, Un deuil au Bout do Monde – 1877

We Celeste Mogodoned
and even Ned Kellyed through all six floors
of the State Library.
Caro’ took her awe-struck time,
squint-eye scrutinised every exhibit.
We guppy-gawped at the celestial dome
where courtroom milieu overruled our whispers
and the scar-carved, pulpited librarian station –
humped and hubbed with carreled spokes
carouseled all fractaling thought.
Walls white-iced and garlanded recalled
the opulence of the Palais Garnier
though no cherubim or nymph gambolled
nor did crinolines flirt.
I folded eyes and tried to conjure –
smelled black powder , instead… asphyxiating intake of breath
and as I pondered, you returned,
blew soft breath upon crimped features
interleaved strong fingers and said, ‘Open, Love,’
and I did.