I chose to meditate into 2018, up at a Zendo off Cerro Gordo in Santa Fe. Besides being nervous about how it was all done, my friend leaned over before the program started and whispered, “That’s Natalie Goldberg.”

I starred in awe, remembering a college introduction to her work through a poetry professor. It was required reading for her class, but I was such a punk, prioritizing theatre rehearsals and late night dinners…I never read, Writing Down The Bones.

That New Year’s Eve in meditation, I left Natalie to hers. But I did go home and pull her book out. Twenty-some years after that professor urged me to write more deeply, and read more than plays, I turned the pages with reverence. Natalie’s book on writing has stood the test of time, and this punk—who finally did her homework.