"Prison Room Mail Worker Blues"

By: Connor Stevens

every day of my life (sometimes even Sundays)

“the children can’t wait to hear from you. I’ll be waiting every day for your call”
“we both know you’re innocent – just hold in there, God will straighten this out”
“the bills keep stacking up & I don’t know how much longer I can go on Feeding the kids. Don’t mean to make it worse.”
“hey sweet thing, hopefully you’ll get transferred to somewhere we can get closer at…”
“you fucked up your life for 8 years but that wasn’t enough – now you’re dragging me & the kids into this?!”
“don’t blame me, and don’t expect to receive another letter. Don’t bother calling”
“I wish I could talk to you right now and be with you”
“do you know what time it is?”
“if you are the dreamer, I am what you dream”
“You’re easily one of the best dudes I’ve ever known. And I mean that. I really do.”
“”I hope you know you are not alone. I have heard from people all over the country who know for a fact you are all innocent and were framed by the FBI… Dare to struggle.”
“I only know you by the way you prayed in the Lodge. I know of your desire for a better world… your heart is good…you have suffered the pain from our collective world…choose that love & courage… make room…”
“The sun just slipped behind a cloud & it makes me wonder if you even have a window…”
“There is a crescent moon that’s almost blood red”
“make them fear the beard”
“Every moment of every day we, everyone, are talking, crying, and thinking of you boys.”
“political prisoners in a country that doesn’t recognize political prisoners… and yet that is exactly what you are.”
“letter from a private prison lead to a Green Revolution, From a Man Who Can’t Stop Laughing”
“…the ‘A’ word is evolving…”
“I never got back to you…you were asking for help, asking for a way out. I could have helped you.”
“you are truly my motication for getting out of bed…your strength is carrying me…”
“he understands that the men in the shadows are manipulative & power hungry, without any good intentions”
“I believe we have the ability to transcend. By the Grace of God!”
“he ‘cried like a baby for a long time’”
“(your niece) said to tell you “I love you with all my heart just like grandma does”
“he’s smart enough to know what’s going on in this world & it hurts him deeply”
“I hope you get this ASAP and it makes you laugh that goofy little laugh we all love.”
“writing may turn out to be your thin thread through the labyrinth to freedom”
"as you fell through the stone to the Earth itself, there will be on expansive warmth you will sense”
“last time I ran into you were handing out meals to needy people”
“you made me a card… written in your own blood”
“you seemed so sad…agitated…down…”
“your mind is free, your heart is free, your soul is free…what else matters”
“a billion stars go spinning through the night”
“blazing high above your head”
“But in you in the presence that will be when all the stars are dead”


and we will never meet, you in Solitary confinement,
me, confined to the solitude of the mail room-
but once, in passing, you looked into my eyes… You, shackled…
what did you see? I dare not ask, even if I were free
to. I’ve stopped caring. I know what you say, but
don’t I have to feed my children? Don’t I have to provide for
my house? That those who follow me may be free? …Free?...
So my eyes are cold, they no longer sparkle, that certain twinkle
In the eyes are cold, they no longer sparkle, that certain twinkle
In the eyes of every little girl, and so I haven’t wept in fifteen
Years- in twenty my family has not gone to bed hungry!
The money for their college fund is quickly looking like more than I ever had
They get straight As in grade school and their father hasn’t run out on my
And I only have a few glasses of wine in the evenings
(and even then I don’t come close to tears – sand cannot produce water)
but what more can one expect of me, in the toil of this world?
And who are you to judge me anyway? You’re probably a murderer
Or was found molesting innocent little girls, or some smack dealer
I never made those mistakes, committed those sins, and yet I
still have to work in this miserable job with low pay and no job security,
barely any benefits, because there can only be one used car salesman
between my husband and I, and the schools in Youngstown are closing
as quickly as the prisons are opening, and the prisons are filled
as quickly as they’re opened – and my little girls, and my
little Joseph aren’t growing up like this, in what this town’s
become since the drug dealers took over and the blacks shoot each –
other in the streets like animals, along with the spics (they’re even worse!) –
they should all be locked-up, then maybe there’s be some more decent jobs
for us decent folks and no one will have to cry again…
So maybe I don’t communicate with people on the level, to the depth,
Of all these in-and-out correspondences I read every day, but my
Husband knows where I stand, and our kids will understand
And I remember a certain rabbit saying something his brother taught him…
You can’t go about blaming “the world” for your problems
The auto industry left - so does that mean morality too?
See, ya’ll simply cannot function like the rest of is
Who follow the rules, and do our jobs, and hold back our tears
Until there are no more to hide
And nothing to say
And there won’t be a college
I’ll settle for a grave

 

 

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