She flung the door wide open, then went in and threw at me an old wooden frame, abruptly. I recognized it at once. I took that shot myself at the beginning of my career and it caused – that’s what she used to say – the end of our affair.
It was still nice; a portrait of her, naked, the back turned. A natural geometry made it very interesting but, due to an unintentional mirror game, some details in the scene told more than expected. A piece of blue sky, something vivid but out of focus and the dark silhouette of a branch reminded of the joy of living, while the black dress on the unmade bed evoked nothing but the ghost of the woman who had once worn it. Though in evidence, she looked distant, elsewhere.
That’s why she left me.
So, I decided to get rid of that picture and sold it to a Turkish collector. I chose him impulsively. More than once, I imagined him standing still in the middle of a room in a flamboyant museum full of golden stucco, trying to follow the line of that pale back far beyond the frame and grab, finally, his expensive illusion of immortality.
When I asked her how she got it back, I received a bitter and illogical answer.
“What the hell!” I told myself “I can’t stand flea markets”.