Life has thrown some hard balls at Barbara Ker-Mann. At age three, she was smitten with infantile paralysis, causing inflammation of her central nervous system resulting in the lifelong loss of leg function. It was a terrible time in her development to be separated from family and encased in stiff white sheets and robes, no color and no window out into the world. This was just the first in the series of difficulties Barbara has faced throughout her amazing life. But she couldn’t be held back.
Only four years old, Barbara found the wisdom of Isaiah 40:31–32 and learned that she could fly like an eagle. There had to be a way; her life depended on it. Who knew that the four strings of a violin could compensate for her clipped wings?
From being inspired to take up the violin, to her time as an American Association of University Women fellow in Japan, to becoming a novelist, poet, and artist, Barbara Ker-Mann has lead a remarkable life. Now in her eighty-first year, Barbara reflects on the remarkable interplay between the positive and negative events of her personal journey and the extraordinary mix between polio and music that has characterized her life.