Little Bits of Beauty

Taking out the trash from the library today, I stopped by the crabapple tree planted at the back school entrance no one uses anymore. My goodness! An utter profusion of beauty by the stinking compost!

On this warm day, in sleepy, quiet Woodbury, the first and second graders walked over for their final visit to the library this school year. I read only one book to them — Jim LaMarche’s The Raft — and remembered the summer I was 10, and my family camped for weeks in the west. I brought the book I discovered with great glee in my father’s very grownup shelves of Hume and Kant and Heidegger. What else but Huckleberry Finn, still one of my most favorite novels.

The children listened quietly this afternoon, checked out their books, and I walked back to the school with a girl who wouldn’t return next year, her arm around my waist.

It’s lovely to live on a raft. We had the sky, up there, all speckled with stars, and we used to lay on our backs and look up at them, and discuss about whether they was made, or only just happened…

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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.

4 comments

  1. I agree with Sue, your reflections are wonderful. Like you, I love Huckleberry Finn and reread it couple years ago, as 40 or so years had passed since my first step into his world. It’s a favourite.

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