Kid Tracks

Tuesday, I’m at the Vermont Department of Libraries for an all-day workshop in the enormous, former high school — the loveliest of buildings in Barre. Built on a hill with a view of the town, every time I walk through the doors I wonder when we thought it was wiser to educate kids in ugly brick and nearly-windowless buildings instead of spacious and high-ceilinged rooms, with a sweeping staircase and polished woodwork.

How the world changes. The building is largely quiet now.

Midday, I walk on slushy sidewalks around a nearby park, a perfect square fronted by enormous ornate Victorian houses. On a snowbank, I see where a child’s mittened hand pressed ripples into the fresh white. The waves are low, and so I imagine a small child walking along in a snowsuit, thinking of not much at all but the pleasure of pressing fingertips into snow. The bank ends, and there’s no more sign of the child.

Here’s one more poem from Buhner’s book…..

People possess four things
that are no good at sea:
rudder, anchor, oars
and the fear of going down.

— Machado

IMG_4798

Photo by Gabriela. Hazen trails, Hardwick.

About Brett Ann Stanciu

A writer and sugarmaker, Brett Ann lives with her two daughters in stony soil Vermont. Her novel HIDDEN VIEW was published by Green Writers Press in the fall of 2015. Let my writing speak for itself.
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2 Responses to Kid Tracks

  1. Nancy says:

    I love it when the snow outlines the tree branches, it’s magical!
    Please tell Gabriela her wonderful photo reminds me of this poem:
    “The limbs of the apple trees
    were lined with snow,
    making a bright calligraphy
    against the world,
    messages to me
    From an enigmatic source
    in an obscure language.
    Tell me, how shall I decipher them?”
    —- Hayden Carruth

    I’ve also had this thought: “every time I walk through the doors I wonder when we thought it was wiser to educate kids in ugly brick and nearly-windowless buildings instead of spacious and high-ceilinged rooms, with a sweeping staircase and polished woodwork.” I think it would be much more inspiring to be learning in an aesthetically pleasing, soul-nurturing space. And it’s rare to see new buildings which are beautiful. It makes me sad.

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