About the Poetry Blog

The poets featured on this page are currently incarcerated, and many of them are in federal prisons far from home. Your feedback is a valuable source of motivation and connection to the outside community. These messages will be passed on directly to the author. Comments may not appear immediately on the site, as our team processes them to mail to the poets.

Click on the poem title to open it up, and then post your comments, feedback, and encouragement in the space below the poem.

A Helping Word

A Helping Word The pain of someone that you care about can hurt you too. You try to help as much as you can but sometimes you just can’t get through. Still don’t give up; that should make you try harder. When someone feels dumb you should help them feel smarter. If someone gives up on their self that don’t mean you give up on them. If you love someone no matter what you will always love them. My advice I try to give to whoever listens. My poems I write to try to help since the beginning.

Respect My “G”

I’ll give my seat up to a lady on the train if it’s crowded. When on a date with a young lady, I’m into opening the car door for her, pulling her chair out for her when we’re about to dine, or giving her my jacket if it gets cold while we’re perhaps taking a stroll in the park acquainting ourselves with one another. I try to mind my manners and not use vulgar language in the presence of ladies…

Respect my Gentleman.

I’m not really into turning the other cheek, and I take any and every threat seriously. Also, I don’t make empty threats. I’m a firm believer in bringing my words to life. I will protect and defend myself and my loved ones. I’m forever processing and committing the patterns of men to memory, conscious of whom I’m surrounding myself with. The traits of men are a lot like the traits of animals in the jungle… no matter how hard you look, you will never see a lion and a hyena walking together in the jungle, because the laws of nature won’t allow it, and as a man I try to abide by the same laws…

Respect by Gangsta.

I’m on my spiritual journey, in search of spiritual enlightenment, trying to become more in tune with the self. I’ve begun practicing meditation, clearing my mind of everything, finding a slow, calm rhythm for my breathing, and simply being aware. I’m trying to get in the habit of always listening to my first mind, in any given situation. Always reminding myself that He is a part of me, and that I am a part of Him, so there are no limits. Ever…

Respect the God.

Poem: “To My Family and Friends”

To My family and Friends

A deep disappointment I know I have been

I have failed them once again

My family and friends do right, while righteous is all they ever asked

But I never seen the righteous path

I was always moving too fast

To my mother don’t feel bad

I know you did your best

You have shown nothing but love

and all I caused you was stress

“Praise God and He will guide you”

is what you always taught

But I chose the wrong path

so my downfall is my fault

I wish I would have just listened

But now I’m paying the price

Success seems so far away

My future doesn’t look bright

I was so blind to the fact that people

really cared about me and my well being

The love was always there

But I don’t deserve the love

It just doesn’t seem fair

That after all the pain I caused them

they are still here

So atrocious, audacious

my actions seem so helpless

inconsiderate of others

I have always been selfish

But my loved ones never left

It just made them love me more

All I did was hurt them

What do they love me for?

Why do they still care for me as much as they do

I don’t know

but to them I have a lot to prove

I must prove that I can do it

And they didn’t waste their time

They have nurtured my life goals

Now it’s up to me to shine

I must focus on my dreams

Because there is nothing I can’t do

For all the love and support that was shown

I really would like to thank You

I love you Mom

Poem: “To My Friend”

Hey Hey Hey Hey

How are you doing?

You know that I am doing okay

You know just being me and chilling

And trying to do better

And you are the best.

Poem: “College”


Most young poets talk about the ghetto

But I’ll talk about college

That’s where I wanna be

To obtain some knowledge

I wanna be out from behind bars

In a college class getting ready for the future

And learning from the past

People think being behind bars

Makes you change your ways

But in reality it only makes you worse

‘Cause there are inmates all around you

With a criminal thirst

We wanna steal, rob and kill

Because we think

There’s nothing to look forward to

We can do what we wanna do

Now in college I can study black history

But behind bars my people are a mystery

Now when I get released

I wanna go to college

Because there’s no point in living

If we don’t have knowledge!

Poem: “Moving Ahead With Excellence”

Moving Ahead With Excellence

Coming from a messed up background where

Boys want to let off shouts and lay strips down

Selling cocaine that is breaking my brothers and sisters down

I done had so many near death experiences

So scared of death now

I been taught as a wild child

Never to back down

To walk with a smile

Even if it should be a frown

Even when I was in school

Too busy trying to be a class clown

Having long talks with my mom

She talking about how I need to turn my life around

She praying that changes come right now

It is a shame that I had to get locked up

To find out that only I can change my life around

Moving ahead with excellence is my motivation

Every time it get hard

I just think of that phrase

And continue my education

Thinking about when I get my high school diploma

How much paper I will be making

When I have a family

I will be bringing in all the bacon

I left bad and went good and left no traces

Hendrix got me on the Novanet

Working ahead, no faking

These tests are my life

Ain’t no time for procrastinating

School  is the way I be raking in all the information

Instead of getting paid with money

I’m getting paid with education

Poem: “A Snapshot of Me”

A Snapshot of Me

I was in the fifth grade at my graduation
Inside my school lunch room
I had a big smile on my face
Because this was the first time I graduated from anything
And the last time too
I had on a white shirt and black pants and a black tie
I thought I was the best-dressed person in the room
Even though everybody else had on the same thing

Poem: “My Life”

My Life       

My life is great…

My life is surrounded by real and fake…

My life is laid in jail for a mistake…

To have a successful life

It’s never too late…

My life is good

A girl, two children, own house

So taking care of my responsibilities is understood…

My life is about my family and not a hood…

My life is filled with love and joy…

This child that my girl is 4 months pregnant with…

I hope it’s a boy

I don’t want my kids to be in jail for life

So I got to explain to them about

My life…

Poem: “Shame”


 What is shame?

Shame is when you commit crimes and leave it on your families

The bad names and the conversations people have behind your back

Shame can also be like when life don’t go your way

You can commit suicide or hurt yourself

Shame can be a very bad thing in life

You can get over shame by believing in yourself and loving yourself

And not letting people cause you headache

And not worrying about what people think.

Poem: “All Alone”

All Alone

All alone like no home,

No place to go,

Ain’t no people I know.

I should be home,

But not alone.

In a cell with no mail,

I just wanna drink fresh water,

Deep down from a well.

Poem: “This Ain’t the Rest of My Life”

This Ain’t the Rest of My Life

For the rest of my life I am gonna stay with a positive mind,

When I go home I’m gonna take care of my son and keep on track.

I’m gonna take responsibility for my actions and appreciate more in life.

Being locked up ain’t the worst,

But most of the time it hurts.

But I would rather be locked up than dead any day.

So with that being said, I’m gonna live up to my father’s name

And fix cars, because that’s what he loved to do.

Poem: “Love Yourself, Be Yourself”

Love Yourself, Be Yourself


Courageous and honest hearts are truly accepted,

Be who you are and love yourself for eternity.

Don’t let nobody fill you up with ignorance and hate,

Your fate is in your hands, so think wisely.

No matter how much you try to be someone who you are not,

Deep down inside you know you are who you are and more.

No matter how small or huge the boat is floating in water,

It will sink to the bottom if there is a hole in it.

So don’t ever let yourself sink, if you know what I mean,

Try to reach high like you are trying to reach the stars.

There is no happiness if you are going to waste it behind bars,

One thing I found in it is myself who was lost in darkness.

I’m thankful for that even though I live with pain in my heart,

I feel like the pain is slowly vanishing away.

‘Cause I’m being myself and loving myself,

For who I am not who they think I am.