Balance

By DJ

I’ve been in this world,
for a short time.
Countless tears
wasted on
nothing an’ no ones

Feeling like my
life is over
before it has begun
Yet why is it
that I haven’t given
up the fight
to right my wrongs
and raise my son right

I have travelled the hardest road
been from this penitentiary to
the next
but no one cares
but me
My life means so much more
to me than it use to
I feel like a bird without
a nest
The hopes and dreams that came so
fast can only be a rendition
of my f-ed up past

Untitled (I Wake)

By LC

I wake
to the sun rising in the East
the rays burning my eyes
as I shake off the sleep

My first vision is bars
before a screen and a half open window
beyond that is cages
a gun tower and twenty foot wall

Then I see something else, everyday
that should give hope to all
High upon a pole. It waves at me
Sometimes to the East, sometimes to the West

Surrounded by blue skies and white clouds
Both symbols of freedom
Both symbols of life
Today I feel neither, tomorrow will be the same

I am of the world, but not in it
So I stare out the window and wonder, WHEN
When will I live my life in this manner
Of life, of liberty and the pursuit of happiness

WHEN, I ponder as I look at the star spangled banner

Midnight Pause of Nature

By JW

Express Yourself
You are true
Unbound by space and time
Down to earth, Paradise within reach

I breathe in the mountain air
This is the way of nature
The sun arises over the mountain
I express gratitude and reverence

I yearn to walk barefoot in the grass
Is it safe?
The moon turns orange on my right and shines
through my window
Is it looking at me?

The geese disappear
What happened?
The flowers are gone
Did I do something wrong?

I would love to eat from a fruit tree
It brings delight to my taste buds
I see a rainbow in my sink
Did it just wink at me as a coded message in time?

Changing Thoughts

By DK

As I sit here tired, alone, but peaceful in my cage
It gives me time to reflect and to let go of the rage.
I see so many guys, different races, different colors,
Makes you wonder why we all messed up, leaving behind our children, lovers and mothers.
What were we thinking while committing our crimes?
Look, it’s left me here…trying to write you this rhyme.
I’m so sorry I left you, so scared and alone,
I’m so sorry I left you in a fatherless home.
I sit here and reflect on all the things that I did,
And how I, not anyone else, caused me a 25 year bid…
So I give you the promise of a much better man,
‘Cause in 12 more years I’ll be armed with a real plan.
I’ll always be there for you in a time of need,
I’m starting now to plant the positive seeds.
Seeds that will flourish into a beautiful flower,
Giving me the strength and knowledge to help empower.
Just because I made mistakes, and lost my way,
Doesn’t mean because you’re my daughters, you’re destined the same way.
So keep your heads high, be proud, and strong…
Daddy will be home; it seems like forever, but it’s really not that long.

Inner Strength

By BH

As a product of his environment,
He could not read nor write,
Designed and programmed for destruction,
Thoughts of suicide haunted him at night.

As a product of his environment.
Incarcerated overnight
Afraid to give up, he decided to fight

Six years later a GED, Paralegal diploma and
An Associate’s Degree in Business Management
He found life.

As a product of his environment
He took flight.