I had the pleasure of spending a few hours with my friend, Estelle Rice, this week.
We have known each other for years, having met through NCWN West, and I love her dearly. She is a full time caregiver for her husband now, and seldom gets to our Netwest events, but she continues to write and we hope to publish a book with some of her stories.
Often we know so little about the pain even our close friends are feeling, but if they are writers and poets, they have a way to tell us. This lovely poem by Estelle is for her granddaughter. I don’t have that experience – having a granddaughter, or losing a child or grandchild, but Estelle gives me a moment of knowing.
For Tara 1964-2003
A Mourning Dove was my companion.
She strutted and cooed
outside my window.
I fed her crumbs from my morning toast.
She returned in the evening
and a gray mantle enveloped
the distant mountains.
I sustained her. In some ways
I cherished her.
Then I remembered
peacock colors covering the hills,
tinting the trees, the clouds.
I sang again. Thanked my companion
and let her fly away.
Estelle is a native North Carolinian who has a BA in Psychology and a MA in counseling. She is a retired licensed Professional Counselor. Her poetry has been published in The Back Porch, Southern Review, and the Freeing Jonah anthologies. Her short stories have been published in journals and anthologies including Lights in the Mountains and Echoes across the Blue Ridge
She is a long time member of North Carolina Writers' Network West.