Once upon a time in Albion, Nebraska, I was a sixth grader-- right in the midst of my "Very Awkward Phase." As it turns out, that V.A.P. has become more of a "life" than a "phase", but something important did change that year in second hour English class when Cheri Blocher became my teacher. She spoke these words straight into my heart: everything is possible and my words and thoughts have value. Even after an English Masters degree years later, I think I may have written more during that sixth grade year than in any year since. I remember many intriguing writing prompts, creating a class poetry book, and entering a writing contest about aviation in rural America. That sixth grade year, despite corduroy knickers, very thick glasses, a ridiculous haircut, and a love of bad puns, the most amazing thing happened when Mrs. Blocher made me love to learn in 1985. A piece of her is with me every day in the Lexington Middle School library where I have the privilege to pass it on.