White feathers appear when Angels are near.

There was always a happy smiling face peering around a moved curtain and little welcoming wave that always greeted me whenever I went back home to see my mum.

She didn’t need to hear the front gate telling her its hinges needed oiling, it was her mother’s intuition that told her it was time to go and look out of her bedroom window.

As I closed the squeaky front gate and walked up the path I knew there would be a pot of mum’s stew and dumplings or some sausages, mash, cabbage and gravy waiting for me as soon as I set foot through the door, but sadly since May 13th, not anymore.

As the taxi driver pulled up outside mum’s bungalow, out of habit I looked at mum’s bedroom window wishing to be greeted by life, but I knew that behind the still curtain my greeting, upon entering through the front door, would be death.

3 months had passed since the urn with mum’s ashes has been placed in the middle of the table at the foot of her bed.

My brother and I had intended to return together in the summer of my mum’s death to put her properly to rest.

Some years earlier, we’d scattered my father’s ashes over the back garden as we thought it a fitting place considering the years he’s spent taking care of the garden.

We thought it only right to let mum be with dad once again so we planned to do the same with her ashes, but with our own families to take care of summer came and went.

After opening up the front door and collecting up about 3 months of direct mail off the floor I made my way to my mum’s slightly ajar bedroom door.

I entered in to mum’s room and my eyes went straight to her urn, there was a certain air of calm that I’d never experienced before.

I then noticed a single small white feather lying over the gap that drawstrings always leave behind when pulled tight.

I wondered where on earth the feather had come from and how it had positioned itself so precisely.

I looked around my mum’s room studying all and every possibility, but I could not find an answer for the feather.

I started to wonder whether the feather had blown in to my mum’s room at some point when the door had been opened and it had settled on the floor, but if that was the case, how did it find its way up and into the position it was now in?

There are no bedroom drafts that could have helped give it flight nor or any other feasible explanation I could think of as to why it was placed where it is.

My curiosity got the better of me and I decided to do some research to see if there was any significance attached to this delicate white feather that has seemingly appeared from nowhere.

I found out that when a white feather appears it signifies that an angel is near, it is also a reminder to keep faith, remain strong and never lose hope.

It can also be a message sent from your loved ones on the other side to let us know that they are okay and that they are protecting us, they are watching out for us and encouraging us to live our lives to the full.

Thinking about how angelic my mum was in many ways when she was alive moved me in the direction of believing that through the white feather she was letting me know that she was at peace with herself and that she would always protect and look out for myself and her other loved ones.

Some people say that when white feathers appear an angel is near and in the case of this white feather I believe my mother will always be near.

A poem by Stephen Austwick.