When In Doubt, Do Handwork

My 19-year-old, pondering what to do with her life, buys fat skeins of yarn and begins knitting a blanket. The metaphor of comfort consoles me, too.

I just read David Grann’s The White Darkness, about Henry Worsley, descendant of Frank Worsley, of the Shackleton Endurance expedition. It’s hard to imagine a more manly man than Henry Worsley, who ultimately perished from complications of his solo South Pole trek. Yet Worsley sewed to calm his nerves. He was skilled at needlepoint. He volunteered to teach tatting — yes, tatting — to London prison inmates. How cool is that?

Shackleton… sought recruits with the qualities that he deemed essential for polar exploration: “First, optimism; second, patience; third, physical endurance; fourth, idealism; fifth and last, courage.”

State 14 ran the first of my monthly Postcards From Hardwick. Check out terrific Vermont voices here.

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#10 Pond

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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