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  • Whenever I make it into Lyons, the next town over from where I work, home to two of the schools I serve, I always stop to visit.

    He's been here since 1995, just before Christmas my junior year of high school. He'd come to Colorado the summer before, when his son, my father, realized it was time.

    He didn't want to be here. He had a house of his own, until Dad sold it, but it was time.

    The Thanksgiving when I last spoke to him, and he understood, is a story for another day, and the reasons why I didn't visit more are sketchy, too. But I know that, whatever the feeling about coming here to start with, he'd really love the view.

    Each stone in places like this one is a story or a dozen just out of reach. The bench with the faded inscription. The family plot, all filled up but for one spot, near the middle. The six month lifespan. The plastic flowers. The war memorials. The empty space. The padlock hanging, never closed.

    He could never read, but he always liked stories.
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