History’s legend claims the Roman emperor Caligula so loved his horse Incitatus that the animal was housed in a stable of marble, dined from an ivory manger, and dozed beneath blankets dyed a precious and beautiful purple. History also testifies to famines suffered by the citizens of the Roman empire. Now that our white house will soon shelter a man whom Holden Caulfield would have likely called a “prize horse’s ass,” we might want to brush up on some of those spicier historical stories.

In my own very minor public service on a local school board, always absent at the board table is the kindergartener who’s wearing a worn-out pair of shoes with laces he can’t tie – and yet every decision made considers that child. It’s folly to forget the little ones… and what’s the other word again? Full of hubris.

Here’s a line I gleaned from the library conference I attended yesterday:

When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched back to everything else in the universe.

– John Muir

twilight, heading home, Elmore, Vermont

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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