Cicada Songs

I find an empty cicada shell beneath a leaf on an oak tree I planted this spring.

That line sums up midsummer, this lush and gorgeous summer. I planted that tree from my bare root order, a mere stick with a frizz of roots. Maybe, my kids said. And yet these trees thrive.

sinking into the rocks,
cicadas’ cry

— Basho

Molly and Fluffy

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.


  1. I used to find cicada shells in my childhood in Pennsylvania. But not a single one here. Yay for oaks. I’m babying a volunteer that is growing in the tangled weedy garden west of the house. Need to choose a new permanent home for it to flourish and expand into.

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