The board game Holiday was set
in our loud neighbour's. On the box,
a ruddy family: flushed child's cheeks,
father's gin-blossom nose. Lame puns
confused me ('Koalas Cross Here –
Koalas Furious Here'); typecasts
spanned Wake in Fright and The Castle.
Passports are required to enter the lucky
red land I knew from wet afternoons.
Cold-sore photo was forgotten when I met
a real Australian daughter on the City Circle
tram; her first time in the CBD too, visiting
from Ballarat. The name appealed, as did
trumping it with a whole other country.
Our holiday differed from the game.
Two hours in the cool, white cake
of the State Library holding a book
from the Philosophy section, admiring
the architraves. Praying agnostic, I felt
ready then to burst through the ceiling
and announce that I would be staying.
Extract from Our Effects