The Slow-Cooked Sentence


Rachael Conlin Levy


My first cub and her ursine hat while sledding on Mount Rose, which has become a yearly trek and measure of time passed.

1. Of or like a bear

Ten years later:


We stuff kids, sleds, hot cocoa, lunch and armloads of boots, jackets, hats and gloves into the car, drive for 45 minutes, trudge up the hill in knee-deep snow while listening to complaints of hunger, exhaustion, cold and the need to pee, and I think: My God, I am a fool. Here I am, another year, and I’m doing this again. Why?

I climb on the back of a sled and hold tight to my daughter. Snow sprays, I scream, a hat flies, so does a boot, and Chaja and I are at the bottom. I stare up at the empty blue sky, gasping, laughing, my heart pounding against my chest, and find my answer.

This year we left my husband and my 2-year-old’s jacket at home, but brought extra layers and friends with infectious attitudes, so although the day started out cold and grumpy, it ended on a warm note.

Sam and Max
Sam and Max.

3 responses to “Ursine”

  1. Heather G says:

    Ohhhhh. We miss you all!!! What fun!

  2. Linda says:

    The hat….I remember the hat! Do you still have it? Does Ivan wear it and growl at everyone?
    Love, Ma

  3. Rachael Levy says:

    We still have it, but Ivan complains that it's too scratchy.

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