Wandering across the campus I am transported 18 years to the past, memories of long wool coats, sauntering to class, full of questions and a hunger to learn. Today, getting our FREE coffee (thank you Squire) I bring my briefcase and the fear that I do not belong. Most of the students are half my age, but I have found a few veterans to align with in my pursuit of publications, teaching credentials, and of course, fame and fortune.

The week will be a long one. Very little sleep. Staring at the concrete walls, lying in the strange bed, the heater clicking on, the blinds rattling, footsteps above me. In the distance, is that a moan? Pain or pleasure? Good Lord. What have I done.

I will be enlightened by guest speakers, writers I did not know.

A poet, with a long list of awards. Words like Guggenheim flitter about the art gallery. MacArthur grants. I am impressed and then she reads, explaining the history of her work and I am moved. Linda Bierds.

Scott Russell Sanders. An essayist. That doesn’t convey much. Sounds dry. But he is anything but. Filled with emotion and history his work fills the room. Again, am impressed.

The fiction writer turned creative non-fiction. Whirlwind is all you need to know. Heather Sellers. Tall, striking, full of energy and stories that make me laugh out loud.

Beyond that, each day, the applied practical methods and tactics, inspirations and sources, to us in class, so that we might glean something from their life lessons.

It continues but for now, their voices are what I hear.

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