Reasons to Love Vermont

Yesterday, bees and butterflies busied around the garden while I planted leeks and peas, and today it’s darn near freezing. Reasons to savor Vermont?

A bit of pink pushes through the apple blossom buds. Siberian irises have dislodged stone in our backdoor entryway, and the rose-cheeked children appear to have grown two inches overnight, rivaling the dandelions’ growth. For dinner, we’re eating pork from a friend’s pig and my tart greens and another family’s sheep cheese. We hear coyotes in the morning, waiting for the school bus, and the principal made phone calls for my daughter and her friend to get together “because I like them so much.”

The sweater I knit is sifted with garden dirt, and my hands are stained from weeding. Rain pours; walk around the house, and the sun shines brilliantly. How could you want to be anywhere else?

….Can I leave
you the vale of ten thousand trilliums
where we buried our good cat Pokey
across the lane to the quarry?
Maybe the tulips I planted under
the lilac tree? Or our red-bellied
woodpeckers who have given us so
much pleasure, and the rabbits
and the deer? And kisses? And
love-makings? All our embracings?
I know millions of these will be still
unspent when the last grain of sand
falls with its whisper, its inconsequence,
on the mountain of my love below.

– Hayden Carruth, “Testament”

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By Brett Ann Stanciu

Brett Ann Stanciu lives with her two daughters in Hardwick, Vermont. Her creative nonfiction book, Unstitched: My Journey to Understand Opioid Addiction and How People and Communities Can Heal, will be published by Steerforth Press in September 2021. Her novel about rural life in Vermont, Hidden View, was published in 2015.

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