Gravy, Today

Early this morning before dawn, I woke and heard rain falling. Not much, but enough to satisfy the seedlings I’d planted yesterday. My garden has been dry, almost dusty. For those moments, I lay still, listening, letting the world around me do its work.

Gratitude’s a funny thing. Like empathy, I think it’s taken me decades to know its miraculous depths. Also early this morning, I received an email with a review of my novel in The Emerald City Book Review. I’ve never met the reviewer, yet she read my book in the way I had hoped the novel would be read, even quoting lines from where I consider the book’s heart, something I have never told a soul.

Like most writers, I toil at the bottom of a narrow, stone-lined well. But today: gratitude for someone who took the time to read and write so well about my book, gratitude to this earthly life that I could chisel out this book, and gratitude for this morning’s moments of rest, lying and listening to the sweet spring rain, falling on my garden.

Gravy, these past ten years.
Alive, sober, working, loving…

Pure Gravy. And don’t forget it.

Raymond Carver, “Gravy”



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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