I had been wondering when I would have my next awe-inspiring meeting with that strong feminist and enthusiastic reader of The Canberra Times, the Lady of the Lake (of Lake Burley Griffin).
Then, suddenly, on Wednesday morning there was a watery whoosh (not unlike the one a Humpback whale makes when it surfaces off Eden, thrilling whale watchers bobbing on nearby waters) and there she was!
I was in Weston Park sitting beside the lake, pensively wondering about the meaning of pandemic life and grieving over the inexplicably premature retirement of Alan Jones.
Her Ladyship saw me there. She whooshingly emerged from her mystical habitat's platypus-rich depths. Dripping charismatically (not entirely unlike statuesquely lovely Ursula Andress coming out of the sea in that famous scene from the 1962 James Bond movie Dr. No) she came and sat beside me on a lakeside bench.
Wiping some algae from her lips, she fell into conversation with me. It turned out she was especially keen to talk about the government's vexed Acton Waterfront proposal.
She had read and wanted to enthuse about the discerning Canberra Times editorial "Acton project a tale of two visions for city" of May 8.
The editorial diagnosed that opponents of the proposal (which envisions a grand lakeside promenade on which frolickers will include folk who live close to the lake in pretty towers of apartments) are only members of "a cohort of older Canberrans who have fond memories of when this city was a medium-sized country town".
For the discerning Times, that mature-age cohort includes the Lake Burley Griffin Guardians.
This columnist agreed with some of the Times' diagnosis of who these Grey Disgruntled are, but I would add to the cauldron of the Times' profile of them not only blood of baboon, eye of newt and toe of frog* but also brain of NIMBY.
If I sense the Acton project's acceptance is faltering, I don't rule out exerting my magical intervention in October's ACT election.The Lady of Lake Burley Griffin
"It galls me," Her Lakeness told me, "that these so-called guardians of my lake think guardianship means guarding it from changes they, this unrepresentative Grey Minority, don't want.
"Caring, responsible guardianship takes into account the wants and needs of who or what is being guarded. And as it happens I, my water nymphs, and all my loyal lake subjects (including the stalwart platypuses) hanker for human playmates to come and live and play on and right beside our waters. How we envy those great beside-the-water cities where city and lake are not strangers (the way they are here in this over-regulated, tightly corseted metropolis) but meet and mingle."
"Our lake exists," the notable feminist continued, "because Walter Burley Griffin, bless him, was obliged to design a city with 'ornamental waters'. But I and my lake have been just an ornament long enough. Trump's poor former beauty queen wife is an ornament. I'm mad as hell. I'm not going to take it any more.
"If I sense the Acton project's acceptance is faltering, I don't rule out exerting my magical intervention in October's ACT election, making sure only supporters of the visionary project are voted for. Watch this space, landlubbers!"
Then, suddenly (not unlike the angry Moby Dick, submerging for its emphatic ram-raid on the whaling-ship the Pequod in Melville's novel and in the great 1956 John Huston movie starring Gregory Peck) she was back into the lake and was lost to view.
Popular, powerful opinion-formers like this columnist (and like Alan Jones) have a duty to lead their teeming millions of devotees to culture.
And so in recent times this columnist (like a dog owner giving a loved dog an essential pill concealed in a blob of mince) has been quietly lacing this column with poetry.
Poetry is as good for all of us (as the vet's prescribed anti-worming pill works wonders are for Rex) in these awful times.
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And, cultured as I am, I am still enough of a knockabout bogan and working journalist to have a special place in my affections for poetry that deals with immediate, gritty, newsy matters.
And so many a time and oft these days I am to be found at the blog Write Where We Are Now.
There, in the joint project of admirable, feminist, former UK poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy and the Manchester Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University, nimble-minded pandemic-touched poets from around the world are continuously contributing new poems about the pandemic as they see and feel it.
Don't leap, readers, to the conclusion that the poems are about death and despair and so should be avoided as if they themselves are a plague. Not so.
Some of my favourites are often elegant little expressions of COVID-induced melancholy. So, for example, there is rural-living Englishman Mike Howard's The wood is too far a walk now, in which he muses that the bluebells must be bluely blooming now in his favourite bluebell wood but he, locked down, cannot go to them and so must imagine them instead.
Tens of millions of us, presently, are being gnawed by these sorts of hard-to-express wistful feelings about people, places and experiences we are having to do without. Write Where We Are Now's poets and their poetry are therapeutic kindred spirits.
*Cultured readers will get this witty allusion to the ingredients the witches add to their cauldron during Shakespeare's play set in Scotland.