Editor, San Quentin News,
My cousin Vanessa G. has been a constant blessing in my life and her continued support has made my prison incarceration bearable. She has been a positive figure of encouragement during my rehabilitation. She put up the money to bail me out when I was arrested. After I acquired legal representation, she would drive me to my court dates. As soon as I started my prison term, she wrote me letters and sent JPay funds; so that I could purchase canteen items. Needless to say, I don’t ever think I’ll be able to repay Vanessa for all the emotional and financial support she’s provided me. There are not enough kind and compassionate souls as hers in the world. Yet, kind spirits like hers are vital to rehabilitating (us). Which is why I hope Vanessa and other angels like her can be honored in your newspaper.
Thank You. C. Perez Jr. Jamestown State Prison
I’m in a 15×10 foot cell — It’s dark as hell — food’s late again, oh well — portion are so small — I’m over 6 feet tall, is that all?I have no money on my books — with unfair restitution — they’re the real crooks — I hear noises all night — sleep is a luxury — don’t believe the hype.There is no mirror — so I slowly wither — maybe someone will visit me. This place is like a horrible disease — I hope every day for a better situation — people are cruel with no hesitation — the notice to the public is my real hope — this is the only way I seem to cope — unfortunately this is my assignment…You are a witness to harsh solitary confinement.
By A. Geh Vacaville State Prison
Race is a very tricky subject around the world or around the corner. I’m not Black, Spanish or Asian. I am White. I’m not racist. I know what it’s like to be called the N-word. My lips are a little larger than a lot of White women. I went to an all-White private school growing up. And they constantly called me N-word lips. At first, I didn’t know what the word was. I’d never heard it until I started grade school. It really did wonders for my self-esteem (that’s sarcasm) I went home every day crying for a long time. But my mother consoled me greatly. She said someday the boys/men would love my lips. And she was right. So here’s a shout out to all women with big lips. You are beautiful creatures, created by God. And don’t let the bastards get you down!!!!!!!!
Life’s not fair when you live in a cage, Head sick, heartsick, full of rage. It’s like your soul is turned to stone — You feel like nothing, you feel alone. Sometimes I try to think past myself and that helps a little. But then I get tired. So damn tired. I can’t explain; it’s not like I am sleepy.
I am wide awake. But I haven’t the energy to help other people anymore. I can’t help myself. I can’t do it anymore. And still I sit in this zoo, this cage. Locked windows, locked doors. I hate the sound of keys jingling in my ears. It just makes me cry on the inside. To know I’m locked in a cage, Head sick, heartsick, full of rage. It’s like my soul turned to stone. I feel like nothing, I feel alone.
From: E. Adams Alton, Illinois MHC