Two Decades Ago

I haven’t lived in a town in what to me is a very long time – over twenty years – and in those twenty years, I went from newly married, to raising two daughters, maple sugaring on a scale that become way oversized for two adults, and wrote a book. I did a few other things, too.

Oddly, living in a small town again, I’ve been given a glimpse back into my female self I might not have gotten before. What’s different from when I was twenty is that I’m a mother now, a writer, a woman who knows her way around a garden and what to do with garlic scapes. Useful things.

I have wrinkles and a great tangle of gray, but I’m no longer afraid of the dark. In an odd way, what I once thought would be so difficult – uprooting – has evolved into one of the easier phases of my life. Or maybe it’s just July, and the greenery is mellifluous. Then again, maybe this is one of the easier parts, and the children aren’t bickering now.

You got to understand: here
Winter stays six months a year—
Mean, mean winters and too long.
Ninety days is what we get, just

Ninety days of frost free weather….

From David Budbill’s “Summer Blues”

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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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