Somewhere in July

Summer mugginess has settled in. Besides pleasing the garden, this offers the kids a chance to complain a little more — as if anyone needs that opportunity.

Again, this is a summer of swimming — of plenty more, too, work (which I’m immensely grateful for), this constant growing up thing my youngest insists on, and the world we live in that appears to be turning itself inside out. I lay awake reading at night and listening to the frogs or the hunting foxes, sometimes the neighbors having a party, and think, What about a little tranquility? But this does not appear to be the time for tranquility, much as I look for it in tiny places — those few minutes of swimming, the raspberry and rhubarb crisp, the sheer pleasure on my daughter’s face when she sees a friend.

These steamy days remind me of New Hampshire summers, when the days spread out so long…. May they yet spread out. Black raspberries, sun gold cherry tomatoes, jalapeños, basil…. May summer creep along.

If you lie quietly in bed in the very early morning, in the half-light before time begins, and listen carefully, the language of crows is easy to understand. “Here I am.”

— Louis Jenkins

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Photo by Gabriela 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.

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