The gallery shop is down the laneway.
Last minute shoppers are fretfully unaware it’s there.
A bronze minotaur rodeo hints something’s there.
I follow the vine infested path,
tracing the old man’s beard with outstretched fingertips.
A rosewood picture frame is visible from the entrance.
The floral inlay reminds me of the gate to her estate.
It’s beautiful but whose face will fill it now?
The bronze woman isn’t wearing stilettos,
they’re part of her, as fused as a Unicorn’s horn.
In the dim light, her soft curves
are flesh and blood with a spray on tan.
I’m almost surprised they don’t yield to my touch
and nearly collapse in surprise once I recognize her.
Pink Floyd’s ‘Wishing You Were Here’
floats in from the masquerade ball next door.
In lunar light masked faces move
as enchantingly as clouds of fire flies.
The most vibrant feathers in the jungle
hide all besides her ethereal hazel eyes.
The old man’s beard mentioned in the second stanza refers to the beard like profusion of flowers on Clematis aristata and Clematis glycinoides etc. These species of vine are found in various coastal and mountainous regions of Australia. I’ve heard (but not verified) that there are over 150 plants world wide commonly known as Old Man’s Beard. Another common name for Clematis aristata is Traveller’s Joy. Clematis glycinoides is known as Headache Vine. According to Wikipedia, the scent of its flowers is supposedly a remedy for headaches. Some say its more of a distraction than a cure, due to the watery eyes and intense irritation of the nasal passages it causes.