September 1

Every September, Stowe, Vermont, hosts The British Invasion, when a bunch of folks fly over the Pond and spent some early foliage time motoring around in their nifty little cars. A few years back, a particularly chatty group appeared in our sugarhouse for a hike into our woods.

Afterwards, the leader began some good-natured ribbing about the general dearth of American knowledge of history, and asked when World War II began, apparently expecting Pearl Harbor to be our answer. When I offered September 1, 1939, he was appeased enough to open wide his wallet and buy some syrup.

On this September 1, 2016, our family made dinner together while talking about the girls’ first week at school. Our kitchen filled with garden sun gold tomatoes, arugula, and garlic, the table strewn with school papers and Lake Champlain shells from our last camping trip.

September is summer fading, the emerald hills fading to light gold, the air sweeter with a crispness creeping in. The real autumn isn’t far off now. Before long, I’ll be digging into our carefully stacked wood pile, and Sunday afternoons the house will be suffused with the scent of baking apple pies.

This September 1, my house doors are open to cricket song. The sun has been warm all afternoon, but as evening ambles in, the shadows are beginning to chill. This would be a fine weekend for hiking.

Sparrow singing –
its tiny mouth

– Yosa Buson

County Road, East Montpelier, VT

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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