He hadn’t meant to crop from this photo the rearview mirror that framed it. He hadn’t meant to drive past the herd of antelope until he had driven by and realized the view from his mirror was memorable.
Next year my father will be eighty years old.
A few months ago, he posted a message on the web, looking for more relatives. Over the past five or six decades, he has mapped a family tree of Irish relatives with roots which trace from here to halfway to the moon. The Irish side of the moon, of course.
Last time I was home to visit, he had just returned from an expedition which spent a rainy day tracking the tracks of Mullan Road, a road that led to the slaughter of seven hundred horses. He was anxious to get back to his computer — he had email waiting to be read from someone new who was living somewhere else in the world and was related to the same great grandmother. Camera still strapped around his neck, he glanced into the kitchen where all sorts of his family (the leaves of his family tree) were preparing a turkey dinner. He shared a distracted wave and hello and retreated to his den.