Shortly after this photo was taken, my dad would leave home and become a drifter.  He bounced around and worked in various rock quarries before he decided to lie about his age and enlist in the military. 

The military would become his home for the next 25+ years. 

“The past is never dead”

My mother never talked about her past and I knew almost nothing about her.  

She was this person who seemed to let life’s accidents shape her – and I was just one of the many mistakes that occurred during her lifetime. 

Then she developed Alzheimer’s and was doomed to live in the past all the time.

By then, she only spoke in this strange dialect of her own – skipping every two or three words, misusing the ones she did say out loud in her thick accent.  I would close my eyes to catch every word and make sense of it – but too many pieces were missing and I never puzzled it out. 

Trapped as she was in her own past, she still didn’t share it, and nearly all of it died with her.