It's been said that I'm "non-traditional" poet, but I'm not certain I know what would make me "non-traditional." I'm probably very traditional, as in I read the canon, and want to know about craft, and think John Donne was a damn fine poet. After I graduated from college, I didn't go to a writing program, perhaps that's what the tradition is. Nor did I get to go tour Europe or even Canada for a year. Ah well. I'm certainly a "non-traditional" student, as I've returned after ten years of traditional wife & mother roles. But, ten years out of academic work doesn't mean I haven't been reading, or writing, or thinking about poetry. It took several years away from the university before I realized that I wouldn't be happy without having literature and poetry as part of my intellectual life. I spent several years doing 1950's style volunteering, being in the kids' schools, cutting shapes out of colored paper for teachers and the like. It was good; I felt like I was making a difference in my children's lives. But when poetry began to call again, I realized this, This!! was what I'd been missing. I wrote a poem about still being able to smell the peanut butter when I'd kissed my son goodnight. It was a terrible poem; but suddenly I was writing again. Which launched me into more reading, contemporary work, as well as my old Norton's from school. I always knew I was going back to study literature one day; but the poetry, which had always just been something I did along the way, suddenly reared up and demanded my full attention. I'm indebted to many of you in blog & board land. You helped me gain the confidence I needed to be able to return to school. Thank you; I'm grateful to know you and to travel alongside you.