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By Micheal Axelsen (06/01/2010)
1964 was a wonderful and a terrible year. The year the Beatles became famous and the year the Vietnam war exploded.
A small room in a small house, in a small Australian town, shows the juxtaposed mix of hope, optimism, fear and hatred. A bible, a child-like poster wishing for world peace, a rough, aging bed freshly made. A recruitment poster declaring that war in Viet Nam needed you to fight for Australia.
The paint, peeling off the walls, gently falling and raining down upon an aging and abandoned guitar. A guitar weeping with flakes of paint to become a mouldering heap of leaded white. A guitar once cared for lovingly by teenage hands strumming chords and dreaming of a life of music, song, peace and love. The same hands later filled with enough hate to hold a gun and kill, maim, and orphan in a war the hands understood nothing of.
Hands once gentle, then violent, all transformed by time and the era. Then killed stone cold dead before the hate could mellow and a black-and-white world fade to gray. The optimism of youth and the contrast of love and hate disguised as love became a bitter well from which the soul never escaped. The bedroom of a beloved son maintained as a shrine, kept as it was so an old woman could keep alive the memory of a life. The guitar wept, all through those long, empty years.
And now, as a deceased estate, this memory could be yours when the property sells at auction later today.