William Stafford was born in Hutchinson, Kansas, in 1914, and is known as a pacifist and prolific poet and writer. During his lifetime, he published more than 65 volumes of poetry, including Traveling Through the Dark, which was the winner of the National Book Award for Poetry in 1963. He has received many distinguished honors including the Shelley Memorial Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a western States Lifetime Achievement Award in Poetry. He also served as the twentieth Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress in 1970 (this position is now known as the Poet Laureate). In 1940, Stafford was drafted and served as a conscientious objector, and later wrote a memoir about conscientious objectors, Down in my Heart. At the time of his death (August 1993), he lived in Portland, OR.