The Start of a New End

By TC

Age one, living life as a toddler lucky enough to have a father and mother
Age two, growing up getting everything I want
Age three, feels like I’m getting taller by the month
Age four, traveling with my family having fun
Age five, I hopped off the porch, started going outside
Age six, it became a habit, hangin’ around older guys
Age seven, God took my grandfather up to heaven
Age nine, got exposed into the street life kinda
Age ten, started observing everything happening on the block
Age eleven, I was eager to get out of school, watching the clock
Age twelve, I watched Apple take his last breath
Why he gone?
Age thirteen, got locked up and I caught my first charge…

Rewind

By IS

If you could rewind time what would you do different
Would you have gathered the tools in life to influence and make a difference?
Would you have listened?
Would you have made better decisions?
Would you have surrounded yourself with people
Who had better intentions?
Would you finish school, get a job, and make an honorable living?
Or would you have jumped off the porch
To be the average statistic?
Would you cherish your friendships?
Or be more careful and distant?
Would you have been humble though affliction
And find strength in religion?
Would you have disobeyed the code, just to get out of prison?
Ask yourself would you have strived
To aid your brother and sisters?
Or would you still be on the corner selling drugs for a living?
Even though you know the consequences creates a conviction.
These questions I’ve asked myself are now for those who listen
If you could rewind time what would you do different?
Would you change who you are? Would you paint a different picture?
Would you follow the same path or put sights on a different vision?
If you could rewind time what would you do different?
Would you have loved the ones you didn’t?
Or make love a distant feeling?
And although I feel like life is pre-written
My question remains consistent
If you could rewind time what would you do different?

To My Youths

By CL

Don’t let my action be your consequences
Don’t let my lie be your truth
Don’t let my ways be your path 
Don’t let my likes be your loves

Don’t let my past be your future 
Don’t let my knowledge stop your knowledge from growing
Let my past be your ambition to do better
Because at the end of the day your choices
Will be the outcome of your future which
Is the youths after you

Peace!

Please educate Allah’s children everyday

Untitled

By WS

I was a young man on a confused journey.
Lost inside my own world.
Misled to a path that never existed.
A child in the streets who grew up to be a man with no vision
and no presence.
Outside, my world appeared bright,
but inside my heart was full of pouring rain.
The only love I ever knew was the streets.
Until it divorced me,
leaving me all alone.
I became a victim in my own savage game.
Untamed, until I was forced into locks and chains.
But never will I cry.

Everyday is now a blessing.
By losing, a winner I became.
It took me a long time to see it when all
I had to do was just open my eyes.

The Untold Story of Me

By AC

Inspired by the book Voces Sin Fronteras (Shout Mouse Press)

 

1985 I was born in El Salvador, right in the middle of a civil war. There was a lot of crime and poverty, because there were more pressing things for the government to worry about.

1991 A few months after my father left for the United States, my brother was born. Amazing brother. We kept fighting all the time, but he has always been there for me. My friend for life, though he sucks.

2000 We (my brother, my mom and I) came to the U.S. It was hard to get the hang of it (I might argue that I never truly did get the hang of it), but I managed. Life changed dramatically, mostly for the better.

2004 I graduated from high school. It felt like a stepping stone, but continuing education was a bit tricky with my immigration status. Also, that year my other brother (half) was born. I love him tons, as I do the other.

2010 After almost ten years of being in this country, I was allowed to get a residency. My doors opened wide and I started to make money at 8-hours-a-day jobs. Everything looked bright.

2012 A dark cloud came over my bright world. A series of bad decisions in my life led to my arrest this year, effectively destroying absolutely everything that had happened in my life up to this particular point in time.

2017-18 After thinking I had lost my VOICE, along with everything else due to my arrest, I discovered I still have a voice, even if my life as I knew it is effectively over. I discovered this in a Write Night letter, in some person’s comment that read something along the lines of : “A.C., I enjoyed your poem. I relate to [such and such a thing]. I liked [this and that]. Thank you for sharing, please keep writing.” I thought to myself: “People actually read these poems that A CRIMINAL has written? Someone read MY poem?” Not only were they reading it, they were relating. They were getting some sort of consolation from me, knowing that they were not the only people in this world to have these thoughts. That thought. They felt that in a way, my writing was helping them remember/realize that they were, in fact, not alone with their thoughts. “Wait, what? Helping? Me? A freaking criminal actually providing ANY kind of help back to the community that I felt I betrayed by breaking the law? I can help?” And so I push myself to share my thoughts openly/honestly so that people can see my vulnerabilities, and doubts, and regrets, and life lessons. I want people to see and comprehend that the world keeps spinning no matter what, and yes, we all have ups and downs, wins and losses. It’s all part of being human. I want people, all people, to simply see that they are not alone in this human experience. I’m a human too (though I’m an Alien…from another country). That’s why I write life lessons; sometimes the tone/mood is down, sometimes up, sometimes in love, sometimes hurt, sometimes hopeful, sometimes profound…etc. I want to show my human side, I want to show the man hidden behind my inmate #. I want to have a Free Mind.