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Washington County Chronicles

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  • Washington County Chronicles

    "One of the quickest changes you experience when entering prison is the internal acceptance that finally you have become the person you were meant to be."

    -- Elizabeth L. Silver
    The Execution of Noa P. Singleton

    The past you've run from
    and the future you run to
    cease to exist.
    All thoughts
    of future,
    and potential
    are eradicated.
    All struggles to overcome
    class and family constraints
    become unnecessary.
    Your birthrights of poverty,
    single alcoholic mother,
    sexually abusive father,
    white trash apartments,
    and other socioeconomic shackles
    are replaced with metal ones.
    And it is a relief to give up the striving
    to be someone better,
    to play the game better,
    to break the capitalistic curse,
    to give up the quiet,
    banging of your head
    against the white, entitled brick wall.
    To give up your golden key
    to a lockdown heaven
    full of token deities
    who serve as "evidence"
    that the American Dream
    of parties,
    delicious romances,
    creative power,
    mass admiration,
    financial freedom,
    fancy dinners,
    a great body,
    and ultimately
    social acceptance,
    can actually be achieved without
    wealthy parents,
    political ties,
    or friends in Hollywood who have
    themselves already been let "in"
    to the magic circle of beautifully photoshopped icons.

    Those who are truly talented, with a passionate message about love and world changes, sit at a filthy bus stop singing "Forbidden Love," pan-handling a dollar for 7-Eleven coffee, surrounded by cigarette butts and wishing they were French fries.

    56 Women...
    In Orange inmate smocks,
    green and white striped pants and
    orange Keds (made in China of course)
    form a society of sameness,
    stratified only into those whose can afford commissary
    and those who can't
    (I am of the former privileged social class).
    I read.
    I write.
    I retreat
    to the safety of my single cell and aluminum toilet,
    free from the pressures of living,
    free from a career bucket list that rolls over day to day,
    no rent to pay,
    no lies that I'm okay,
    no confidence to portray,
    no rationalizing my Starbucks habit over bills I should pay,
    no hiding from men that I'm not Bi just gay,
    3 books from the jail library on Monday,
    clean underwear on Wednesday,
    commissary on Friday
    (how most of us mark another week of time served),
    newspaper on Saturday.

    The joy of being hopeless is that you're no longer passing time, trying to get somewhere, to be someone. It's the blessing of accepting what is, no more, no less. No striving to catch up to your higher self while you slug it out on earth.

    And I think, "We don't really reap what we sow."

    With all my newfound "Freedom", what to do? I write POETRAP and trade for top ramen, and at night I breathe easy, no longer running out of time. All I have is time. And my cup of hot noodles.

    End Note:
    This poem is dedicated to the 'Bitches' at Washington County Jail -- you know who you are -- who, even in the midst of addictions, fucked up relationships with their boyfriends/drug dealers, and other life struggles for which they are judged (and sentenced), gave me the freedom TO BE REAL. Because, after all, that's what freedom is.
    Last edited by Sister Greed; 04-11-2016, 10:26 AM.

  • #2
    Brilliant insight in to the 'prison' that a 'free' community can be. I want to go to jail now!! Nice work.


    • #3
      Ha ha! Thank you very much.


      • #4
        I have no words to express how beautiful this is. I am feeling inspired to write again( was experiencing writer's block). You made me feel like I was in that prison, made me feel the sense of freedom, made me feel the poem. And if that isn't what poetry is supposed to be like , I don't know what is. Much love, Sister Greed.


        • #5
          " Freedoms' just another word for nothing left to lose". This is an entrancing look into a world seldom comprehended by those who've never encountered it. Kudos to you Sister


          • #6
            Thank you!


            • #7
              Riveting. You took my concept of jail like you were pulling the boogie man out from underneath my bed. Your perspective and writing is beautiful! Love


              • Sister Greed
                Sister Greed commented
                Editing a comment
                Thank you. I hope the boogeyman is firmly dislodged!

            • #8
              OutfuckingSTANDING, Sister Greed! What a poetic trip! So eloquent, sharp, canny, clear, revelational. Beautifully written. Thank you for sharing. I hope this wins.


              • Sister Greed
                Sister Greed commented
                Editing a comment
                Wow. Thank you, Grant. Excellent. I'm glad you think so!