Studded Snows

What’s the one thing that makes Vermont winters survivable? Friends? Laughter? Knitting? A chicken roasting in the oven? Nope: snow tires.

Driving to Burlington on a snowy Sunday morning to interview a young poet, I kept thinking, At least I bought new snow tires. When my daughter disappears in the darkness to work, I think, I’m so glad I shelled out for those tires.

On my way home through the Calais back roads, I pull over at the town hall, a beautiful and somewhat mysterious building to me — why is it here? what’s the history that’s now disappeared around this building? I’ve been listening to NPR’s Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me and laughing so hard I’m actually crying.

Outside my little Toyota, I’m immediately reminded of winter’s enchanting beauty, the bit of wind on my cheeks and the snowflakes in my eyelashes. Sunday afternoon, and no one’s out and about, save for one  grownup far down the road, walking a dog. Leaving my car at the roadside, I walk down to the meeting house and stand there, staring up at the steeple in the gauzy snow, listening. Then I put those snow tires to use again.

Winter seclusion —
Listening, that evening,
To the rain in the mountain.

— Issa

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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.

5 comments

  1. Just read Ben Hewitt’s post and now yours – and glad for this grey dull CT shoreline mild winter as I am, just for these moments and a little after as your gorgeous images still shimmered in my mind, I wished I lived in Vermont.

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