2. Pain

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There is a picture hanging in the living room of my aunt's home. It is the only worthwhile picture of her career as a photographer, the only picture she ever managed to get published. In it a house is burning.

The walls spit golden sparks. The lawn blackens. The face of the house-it has a face, almost human-is screaming. Smoke pours orange-hot from the door's mouth. Yellow tongues lick from the eyes of the windows. The roof has just caved in, and fire reaches up joyously to the night sky, a dancing wig of flames.

It is a portrait of pain.

Sometimes I imagine my aunt on the street, her camera raised. I see her finger on the button, see it press down, snap, capturing forever with a click.

I asked her once why she liked photographs, why they meant so much to her.

She told me that some moments are special.

She told me that some moments last a long, long time.

____ ____

Author's Note:

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