When I get to the end, I pause. There’s an inconsistency, a ghost in this story. I read it. I read it again. And there it is. Who put out the fire? A long-dormant voice says, Dad did. But Luke was alone when I found him.

I’d never seen this side of my father, but I would see it many times after — every time I sang. However long he’d worked in the junkyard, he was never too tired to drive across the valley to hear me.

Unable to reach his sons, Dad called Rob and Diane Hardy, because Mother had midwifed five of their eight children. Rob arrived a few hours later, cackling. “Didn’t you folks damned near kill yerselves last time?”