The Old Photo

I

The photo has been torn in half

and then clumsily repaired with some tape

that has now become brittle and yellow.

It’s hard to tell if the tear

was deliberate

although each half

shows a figure, the tear right down the middle

as if done in anger or hate

before being repaired

by an unknown hand

and then stored carefully away.

The colours are faded now

the sepia tired and worn

a relic from the past

with a story

no one can tell.

 

II

The photo is in sepia

the corners are curling

and it is battered

as if it has survived many moves

and been handled many times

passing from person to person,

cherished and loved as time has passed

and memory has begun to fade

identity from those who see it.

Now the figure is nothing more than that –

a curious relic from the past

a figure someone once knew

an image once cherished.

Now, it is passed over, from hand to hand

curious eyes look at it, marvel at the figure

without knowing who it is.

 

III

It’s hanging on the wall

a portrait from another time

a black and white photograph

of a girl staring candidly

at the camera

eyes deep, a fixed expression.

There are pearls around her neck

and her hands are clasped

as she stares at the camera

as if staring into the very soul

of the one who took it.

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