Expression cannot be locked up in a cell.

A Poem from the Incarcerated

April 19, 2013
One of the young inmates at the Cheshire County Correctional Facility is a Hispanic from New Brighton, Lionel (whose name has been changed for anonymity). Lionel has the liveliest presence for someone in his situation: every Saturday he greets me with a warm chuckle and sincere handshake. He hangs on every word of our conversations, though at times jittering, and shaking his head, explaining to me that: “m’am, we are sheltered from the way you think.” Trying to better understand him, and his past, I asked him to write a piece that was representative of his past. The next week Lionel showed up with his unfailing smile and this poem, asking me when he would become a published author. Well, here it is, Lionel.