Claudia L. Smith

A Rose for Alice

24 x 48 inches

I painted "A Rose for Alice" in memory of a lady who was, by some standards, a stranger. She and her husband were building a home, next-door. During construction, she revealed she had cancer. Eventually, she became too weak to get out of the car, and I'd take her a rose from our garden. She died two days before their move-in date. Despite our brief encounters, I felt a strong bond. I was consumed with the need to paint what I felt.

"A Rose for Alice" now hangs in The Comfort Room at St. Anthony's, with its accompanying poem. Both are dedicated to loved ones, who have gained eternal life, and continue to live on in our hearts.

"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." Revelation 21:4

"It's hard to choose," she said, "from such a wide selection;
Their attributes are many, each has its own perfection."

(four verses omitted)

Then she gave a knowing smile, as she bent and picked a rose,
Saying, "I'll take this one with me; it was meant for people's souls.

"Its petals are most delicate, but certainly belie,
The strength within its sturdy canes that reach toward the sky."

Now the garden lies there empty; a breath of life's been stilled;
But the song of Life continues, with its essence, we are filled.