Drinking Water Beneath the Moon

After a day of one thing after another, we suddenly arrive back at home together — my older daughter returning from a 12-hour shift, my teenager and a friend dropped off by another mother. I stand in the driveway talking with this mother, while my daughter runs in the house and hurries back with a gift of eggs from her chickens.

The little neighbor boys, munching dropped apples, wander over full of pleasure and wonder at seeing us, as only four- and two-year-old are. What are you doing? they ask. An existential question, I whisper to my friend. The teenagers are ravenous and cannot stop talking. Leftovers, I suggest. Put the leftovers in the oven for dinner.

Later, the girls have disappeared into the dark. I leave a sinkfull of dirty dishes and sit outside beneath the crescent moon. The neighbors have put their children to bed. It’s just me and the crickets and that autumn chill creeping in. Over the horizon, the sky turns a dark-turquoise shade of blue to impermeable black. Beneath this, the girls run up the road, out of breath, laughing.

In this autumn,
Why I get older?
The clouds and birds.

—Basho

IMG_6098
Photo by Molly S.

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.

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s