What I Learned About My Father, and Myself, By Inheriting His Rifles

The Trace

On an afternoon between the day my dad died and his funeral, in early November 2006, one of his brothers — not a man who was always on the right side of the law — came by, drunk, asking after Daddy’s hunting rifles. They were tucked away in a closet in my parents’ home in Clinton, Arkansas, a small, rural town on the southern edge of the Ozark Mountains. We had honestly forgotten about them.

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