Away Game

Leaves drift through the air wherever I go these days, in autumn’s near-constant breeze, whooshing out of sight.

At a high school soccer game beneath lights, bundled in boots and hats, we watch the boys cheer for the girls. In the second half, the boys brush off an impending fight with a rival team. For just a moment, we wonder, Which way will this go? Overhead, Vs of geese call loudly, heading out of here, south. The scent of frying hamburgers tantalizes.

The high school’s the most run-down I’ve seen in Vermont, the field patchy, dwarfed by an enormous research facility for adult work, gleaming in the setting sun. Somehow, we have the sense the adults’ cafeteria serves up finer fare than subsidized school lunch. My daughter’s high school is one of the state’s scrappier — no secret there — but much more moves beneath the sailing soccer balls.

All the long drive home, the river swallowed up in the dark, we talk and talk and talk, passing the time and the miles, our two headlights illuminating the first traces of snow.

Home through the woods,
through the chill rain.

The last leaves down
and sodden on the ground.

The end of autumn...

—David Budbill

img_7002.jpg
Enter a caption

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