Wild Rose – that's what she calls herself. While I was speaking with Priscilla and Darlene in Macon, GA, Wild Rose (WR) walked up and said that she would be happy to be photographed. This was like Manna from Heaven.
We walked a few feet to a table and bench, where she had a large sack full of her belongings. WR has a van filled with articles that she made, all to be sold to raise money for the homeless. The 1992 Chevy van broke down in Macon, so she is homeless herself while it is in the shop. She said that the shop wanted $700 for a 'rear end', but that it was a ripoff. While being repaired, her son's baby was born, and she couldn't be present (WR teared up when saying this).
WR lamented that government services for the homeless are usually geographically distant from where the homeless actually live. In Macon, many homeless stay under a bridge, and soup kitchens are miles away.
I asked about a notebook filled with photos that was out on the table. The images were of destroyed homes in Joplin, MO, following the devastating tornado. WR drove to Joplin after the storm, to provide comfort to those who had less than she.
This portrait is far from flattering, but Wild Rose approved of it when she saw it on the camera's LCD. I think that the look fits with her self image of someone used to hard times, who lives to help other people in even tougher situations. She asked that I publish her phone number (listed in Greenville, SC), so that perhaps someone would contact her to help the homeless. I said that I would do that, but that the Flickr group and blog are not set up to make connections like that. WR said that God works in unexpected ways, and you never know from where help will come. OK, here it is: 864-438-8628.
Good luck, Wild Rose.