Mary Ricketson, MAEd, is North Carolina Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor and a published Poet. Mary believes everyone has the capacity to live a happy and fulfilling life. She uniquely combines her talent as a psychotherapist with her art as a poet, to engage with people on a helpful level. Mary works on the principle of making a safe and balanced life, taking responsibility for one’s self, engaging support, and trusting one’s self.
Starting in the helping fields in 1970, after receiving an undergraduate degree from Our Lady of the Lake College, San Antonio TX, Mary moved to the mountains of Western North Carolina in 1974. She worked in the start-up phase of a sheltered workshop for handicapped adults, traveled to graduate school at night, received an advanced degree from Western Carolina University in 1979, worked as a therapist with a local mental health center, and started a private practice in 1987.
Mary serves survivors of trauma, people with mood or anxiety disorders, grief, and attention problems. She has taught psychology at Tri County Community College and writes a monthly newspaper column, Woman to Woman. With a special interest in women’s issues, she was a founding member of the local shelter for abused women and is listed in Who’s Who in American Women.
Meanwhile she grew her own food, built a handmade house, raised a child, learned a variety of mountain crafts, and ultimately fell in love with poetry, to satisfy a hunger and to taste life down to the very last drop. She is still an avid gardener and operates an organic blueberry farm.
She has published four books of poetry, I Hear the River Call My Name, Hanging Dog Creek, Shade & Shelter and her newest book, Mississippi: The Story of Luke and Marian She has read her poetry to groups in North Carolina, Georgia, and Kentucky.