Sticks and Girl

My daughter picks at dirt on the cuff on her jeans, troubled by this, which interests me. She’s a remarkably easy and even-tempered girl, and I sometimes wonder at her own and distinctive understanding of the world’s order.

In my bare root order, I have a handful of what seem to be sticks with filigreed root balls. Walking behind our garden in the damp April evening, she asks me if I’ll still live here when these sticks become trees.

I’m planting for the property, I answer. That answer suffices for her. She stands with me, as we envision stick widening into trunk, twig fattening into branch.

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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.

9 comments

  1. Your post reminded me of something that just sits quietly in the background. Time has a way of deceiving us, the growth of trees I’ve planted makes the passage clearer to me than a number in my mind.

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