Her reply came moments later. "Glad to know you can benefit from my death! You can take it home with you the next time you visit if you want." (This is not the first nick knack I've asked to be willed)
And I did. It now sits familiarly on my bookshelf with Paul's Star Wars novels and my historical ones, several books about the Beatles and Elvis, King Arthur and the dinosaurs and a heavy tome containing Edgar Allen Poe's complete works. The dust cover, bearing Mr. Rockwell's "Grace," is torn along the spine and its edges curl away from the hardback, revealing its burnt orange binding. It is comfortable to me, and reminds me of youth and home.
I would spend afternoons on the floor of my parents' bedroom pouring over that book. While a healthy dose of text is sprinkled between the paintings, I cannot honestly say I've ever read the words. My eyes are drawn to the paintings, and each time I look I find yet another telling detail that reveals a little more about the subject.