Hopeful Strings

In the night, the cold moves in. The evening before, returning after work in Vermont’s “big city” of Burlington, the frogs chirped, and the air, drenched with a heavy rain, was suffused with the hummus-y scent of soil and leaves beginning to turn and rot.

This morning, the crescent moon shimmers.

Against the noise of the news these past few weeks, as I’m feeding the cats, I think of Leslie Schwartz, in Los Angeles County Jail, tenderly nourishing tiny sprouts from apple seeds, the slenderest of life, nonetheless growing within concrete.

So I fell in love with the apple sprouts the way one might a newborn.

— Leslie Schwartz, The Lost Chapters: Reclaiming My Life, One Book at a Time



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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