After the Tornado: Ann

This is my friend Ann and what's left of her house in Duquesne, a small hamlet bordering Joplin that was just as damaged. Ann and I serve together on the board of the art center. We laugh and roll our eyes together during these meetings, trying to strike a balance between keeping it light (it's ART, enjoy) and demanding excellence (you said you'd volunteer for this vital place, so DO it, people). She is a light in my life, someone I immediately connected with when I moved to Joplin and someone who is truly genuine with her evolution. Not so ironically, perhaps, she has her own business in the healing arts called Life Preservers grief support: She is such a guiding light for others, I often wonder who guides her.

Artist Matt Dehaemers took this photo of Ann on the day he and other KC artists collected the debris to create an installation in KC (stay tuned). She is rising above, yet she is in the midst. It reminds me of epic oil paintings, a Delacroix scene of unspeakable agitation in a turbulent Turner landscape. The next photo is one Ann took herself, a sign of hope or maybe just the stubborn longevity of a best-seller. Ann will rise and rebuild, because that's who she is. I hope to be there as she does.