Political Art? Or Just A Lot of Stuff Kicking Around?

A tower of filing cabinets? My 13-year-old is simultaneously entranced and dumbfounded. I don’t get it.

Maybe, I suggest, we shouldn’t think about getting it but just take it in. She gives me that look perhaps unique to only young teenage girls — a combination of you’re not making any sense in my world coupled with I’ll try to humor you. 

In the single degree temperatures, with a frigid wind blowing over Lake Champlain, I offer a quick rundown about bureaucracy, thinking Kafka, Kafka, remembering driving by the tall Bank of New Hampshire building as a kid, wondering how many people worked all day, buried deep in that building. Even at night, the building glowed: cleaning crew shift.

Despite the cold, she’s happy — I can see it — this kid on the cusp of shedding her childhood — her face reflecting that combination of WTF and how cool is that?


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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