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The Photograph in the Hall ~ a Response to a Word Prompt

John is a poet and short fiction writer who enjoys collaborating on stories with other writers, and partaking in challenges.

Photo album

Photo album

It is a cruel, ironical art, photography. The dragging of captured moments into the future; moments that should have been allowed to be evaporate into the past; should exist only in memories, glimpsed through the fog of events that came after. Photographs force us to see people before their future weighed them down....

— Kate Morton ~ The House at Riverton

The Importance of Photos

Our memories are precious and even when life changes, we relocate, or family members and friends leave or pass away, those people and places still remain with us forever as long as our memory remains intact. But an even better way to ensure those memories are never lost is through photos.

Some of our most valued family photos are hanging in frames on the walls, others in albums, and many more still in the original photo packets they came in from developing. We have boxes of photos stuffed in cupboards to shoved under beds.

We have photos passed down from parents, grandparents, and other relatives, some of people we don't even recognise or know but we keep them all the same. There are photos of special occasions like weddings, Christenings, birthdays, and of the holidays we have from places we may never visit again.

Nowadays taking photos is a breeze with our smartphones, tablets and the like, and we can upload them to albums and even print them ourselves without the need of paying and waiting for them to be developed. But whatever else changes, and technology develops, one thing is certain. We will still embrace our memories and want to hold onto them through photos in one form or another.

Thank you once again, Brenda Arledge, for this wonderful prompt and opportunity to write something creative about the word "photograph." (Word Prompts Help Creativity ~ Week 33)

Vintage Portrait

Vintage Portrait

The Photograph In the Hall

Oh, I stare up at the photo that is hanging in the hall

And wonder who the people are, there are few I can recall.

All were gone before my birth, though ancestors one and all.

My parents spoke about them when I was very small.


Well, that photograph is eerie, for the eyes from within stare

At anyone who passes by or stops to scale the stairs.

My grandparents owned this old house and lived here until they died.

Then my parents tried to sell it but it seems no one would buy.


So, now I’m living here alone, just the photograph and I.

To say it doesn’t freak me out would be more than a lie.

If friends happen to visit me, the cause I can’t deny,

That photo in the hallway makes their little children cry.


The photo’s housed within a frame, gilded but scuffed by time.

The faded faces all look stern, as though smiling was a crime.

I’d like to sell the photograph, well at least the fancy frame,

But I am sure if I did that the family would complain.


I’ve read all the history books, and checked my family tree,

But, for now, the dead aren’t talking, at least they aren’t to me.

I tried to take the photo down but I couldn’t make it budge.

I climbed up on the ladder, but I felt a sudden nudge.


The ladder fell down with a crash, and I went tumbling too.

The photograph’s still on the wall and I swear my take is true.

Perhaps the picture’s haunted, or you think I’m going mad,

But the photo has new faces - my grandmother and granddad!

Grandparents: Image by William Cain from Pixabay

Grandparents: Image by William Cain from Pixabay

When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and white, you photograph their souls!

— Ted Grant

Photograph ~ an Acrostic Poem

Please try to remember

How we used to play together

Other children often joined us

Taking lots of chances

Oblivious to dangers

Getting into trouble

Racing to be home by dark

Avoiding parents anger

Photographs we took don’t lie

Holding secrets we kept hidden

Children playing

Children playing

Camera vs Gun ~ a Haiku

Shooting a photo

Captures without destroying

Camera not gun

Camera vs Gun

Camera vs Gun

© 2021 John Hansen

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