I've been a wanderer, a seeker, a flower-child, a thinker, a dreamer, an artist, poet, working-wife, salesgirl, fashion model (for a minute) photographer, teacher, line firefighter and officer, Emergency Medical First Responder and hospital E.R. caregiver. None of those things entirely defined me, but they shaped who I would become and what I would someday have to say. They set the challenges of the hour and marked the places on the path were I learned things.
I loved to write when I was six, as soon as I learned how. I loved words, how you could make mind-pictures out of them. I collected them like seashells, hoarded them, and wrote them down in secret notebooks. At about six and a half, I decided "I'm going to be a writer and write books." But I was torn, because I also wanted to be a firefighter or else a jockey and ride racehorses.
I got busy doing other things, grew up, went to college to study Fine Art, then I got married and left my beautiful life to support him through graduate school. I worked a soul-killing clerical job at the Hew Haven Telephone Company for three years. I was the woman, so of course I gave up my goals for his. It was the sixties, Women did that, especially Southern women.
When he was finally thru school and got a job, I got a divorce, and I set out to find a life of my own, beyond the shadowy periphery of his. I had all sorts of unlikely but wonderful adventures, I made mistakes, and finally, 30 years and several careers later, I made the commitment to writing. I never did get to do the racehorse-jockey thing.
Through the hard times, I had turned to the empty page when there was no one else I dared to tell. I wrote in secret. Atr the end of my un-Cinderella marriage, my soul recovery was not easy or fast. There were times I was so lost, I feared my mind was trying to escape this world. That was terrifying. And yet, in times that I could not even speak, I wrote. What I wrote began to tell me who I was.
To the page I poured out my regret, my loneliness, my despair at the life I had made, but also my fragile hopes for something more.Poetry would be my road back, my refuge, my therapy, my one true mirror, my small voice singing in the silence, and ultimately, my salvation.