Recent Work By Jennifer Duffield White

I have been staring at a mobile above my head for the last 10 minutes—birch bark cranes twisted up like origami, strung from the brittle twigs of a dead tree branch.

At first, it seems simple enough—graceful, even.

My charge for the day, 3-year-old Ruby, and I are skipping down the snow-covered sidewalk.

“This is going to be so fun,” she giggles in time to the swish of her snow pants.

It’s Winter Carnival, and our destination is the symbol of all things ice-blue and festive: The Ice Palace.

When I’m standing in my socks, on a slightly damp doormat, the moisture seeping through into the creases of my toes as an older couple in trench coats thrusts pamphlets on sin and temptation into my hand, I feel a little indignant.

Last week, several newspapers picked up the report from the U.N. announcing that the world’s urban population is about to surpass the rural total for the first time in history.

They say, on August 16, 2008, the shift will happen.

It’s not accurate.

Mountain towns have a strange social dynamic.

A lot of us live in our own little micro-worlds of specific adventure sports.

We go through phases of being social and then being hermits.

There are certain things you aren’t supposed to admit to—things, people might construe as faults in character.

For instance, say you admit you love spandex—tight, shiny, full-of-flesh fabric.