Snow Child

It’s an Ezra Jack Keats kind of snowy day (or days) in Vermont. If you’re not out foolishly driving around (and not many are), the snow is spiraling down exquisitely. After hours of tedious work inside, while the snow swirled against the windows, I walked along our unplowed road. Pausing on my way to meet my neighbor, I remembered those winters when my firstborn was a toddler, and winters really were one months-long housebound snowstorm.

Every day, I pulled my chattery child along the road on a runner sled. Always, at the same place she would beg me to lumber through the deep snow into the woods and pluck a few miniature hemlock pinecones from a low hanging branch.

Years later, unboxing this red snowsuit for her younger sister, I discovered tiny pinecones in every pocket.

It was so wonderful to be there, safe at home, sheltered from the winds and the cold. Laura thought that this must be a little like heaven, where the weary are at rest.

– Laura Ingalls Wilder, The Long Winter

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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.

6 comments

    1. Eowyn Ivey’s Snow Child has made the rounds of my library trustees. Someone donated a stack of copies, and I’ve been passing copies along to readers. That’s a beautiful book. Hope to see you soon, too…..

  1. During the big snowstorm yesterday, I was lying in bed with my toddler, blankets pulled up to our chins, reading that very book (for the third time and she is only 4 years old). We both love it and were very glad that we were not staring at nails covered with frost and that we have a driveway filled with wood. Those were very tough folk.

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