Many poets are often stereotyped, and Charles Causley is no exception. "Ballad poet" is a description frequently used, pointing to his use of traditional forms and his ability to tell a complete story in a poem. But Causley's poetry is much more varied than that, and even the ballads are often not as straightforwardly conventional as they might be. Mike Cooper looks at the full range of Causley's poetic styles and forms, to investigate just how appropriate a term 'balladeer' might be. Mike graduated from high-school in Manhattan with Frank McCourt as one of his teachers. He first encountered Charles Causley (as the 'poet-in-residence') when studying English at Exeter University in the 1970s. He regularly used Causley’s work throughout his teaching career, corresponding occasionally with him through the 1980s and 1990s. He still writes for the education press, and is currently contributing a series about Causley's war poetry to the Causley Trust newsletter, 'St. Thomas Water'.