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In the living room, on the left hand side of the mantelpiece lay a photo frame. I say lay because it was not sat; it was face down so that the picture was not visible. For two months no-one had touched it. It seemed too insignificant to do anything about. It was unknown as to who had originally performed this action, or their motivations for doing so, or whether someone had done it intentionally at all.


In fact, I really cannot say if anyone had noticed or considered these possibilities. I can only speculate that at some point or another, one of the members of the family may have glimpsed it out of the corner of their eye and momentarily pondered this phenomenon before returning back to the television.


There had, however, at one point been a decision made that the photograph it contains was significant enough to be elevated to mantelpiece position and that the photo frame was a tasteful addition to the living room décor. I cannot describe this frame accurately as my visual memory is significantly poorer than average, but, I do think that it was quite possibly white and perhaps of a fairly ubiquitous nature.


There was certainly, from what I can remember, nothing particularly special about it. I am not sure whether I would have actually seen it if it wasn’t for its mysterious placement. I felt a deep suspicion, nevertheless, that it might somehow be vying for my attention, pronouncing itself against the vast sea of nothingness  of the stuff that fills everyday domestic life.


As a guest, I felt it would seem rude to mention it and there was never a moment that I was left alone long enough to take a quick look. What drew me to this particular object is really between me and it, quite inexplicable really; an unknown or forgotten relationship; trampled somehow or flattened like the frame itself. And, all of this regardless of the fact that I had never stepped into that house before in my life.


Despite my lack of visual memory, some images do repeat on me, or, maybe it’s not the image itself exactly, but the conditions that led to the image’s creation, like for example the turned down photo frame. Real gunfire doesn’t sound like it does in the movies. It doesn’t contain the same auditory drama. Things thud to the ground in real life and you don’t necessarily hear things coming at you in advance. I am actually wearing earplugs right now (to help me write) so I would say that I am particularly vulnerable to attack.


I would like to know what sound the photo frame made as it hit the mantelpiece surface. It would obviously give some indication as to the circumstance of its demise and whether or not it had caused offence or was done with a conscious form of tenderness and regret.

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