My father brought home rocks. Iron pyrite, mica, azurite, malachite, obsidian, pink and white agate, flint--and history through rocks--obsidian arrowheads, pottery shards, geodes, fool's gold, mica windows, limestone canyons, turquois beads, grinding stones, slag, and sometimes the red metal itself extracted from the hole, whole and in its natural state.
My father brought home graphite pencils painted turquoise blue and numbered in gradations of hardness and darkness which he kept sharpened to the quick and bound in rubberbands. He brought home watercolors and oils and tiny brushes and colored pencils and fat gum erasers and tracing paper and paper with tiny grids, and at night he wrote his tiny numbers in his tiny gridded books and took his surveying scope out to the front yard and pointed it up to show me what he could of the moon and stars. He tells me da Vinci mixed his paints from ground minerals and linseed oil, that the indians did something similar.
He kept his map of the sky.