An ancient black and white photo preserves my oldest memory of Grandpa Rohde. A cigarette burning at his fingers and an amused expression on his face, he cradles my two-year-old frame. In the foreground, Grandma tries to hush one of my famous tantrums. We are at my older brother's baseball game. I want to play so much but am much too young, so a tantrum is inevitable.
{ passages of the rock river }
{by luke seemann} Later in life Grandpa would show my brother and I how to fish with bamboo rods, a pint of (momentarily) live worms and six hungry people to feed. Grandpa did not have a license so could not fish himself, but he briefly cast a wormless hook into Wisconsin's Rock River to demonstrate what we were supposed to do. Before he could retrieve the line he had miraculously caught the day's first bullhead. This was the understated magic which would make him remarkable in my eye.