Moon from a prison window,solitary confinement, inmate mental health
Moon From a prison Window

(Sonni’s note: This is a re post. I wanted to bring it back into the picture. It was originally written early last year. It will help those who don’t know the story of Jamie and what happened in the year between being finally let out of juvy and ending up in prison. It was during this year he met my daughter and they had a baby who was born 7 months later. My daughter tried to be there for him but she was young and in her 20’s and knowing it would be a long time before he got out, she eventually went on to live her life. It left Jamie with no one. Because there was no one else to love, that last image of her he has carried with him as if it were yesterday. His own family has contacted him very infrequently and for a very long time it was just he and I, trying to get through his years of solitary confinement, also called ad seg or G5, as he was helping me get through years of extreme illness.

I found him to be a gentle soul, that due to circumstances, never had a chance to find out who he was. This is why I started the blog and why I started writing the book InsideOut, to validate his existence and try to turn these years from something negative to something positive. You can find two of the chapters of the book at the end of the paragraph. I would greatly appreciate any feedback you’d like to leave, and if you want to be on the mailing list for the book fill out the contact page at the bottom and state that it is for the book, as other contact forms are out there for other reasons.. and

photo credit:
photo credit:

Ahhh. . . The moon. It was a beautiful sight. However, I’ve been moved to another cell. I can no longer see outside. But I can still see the moon in my mind. Such a beautiful sight to see, it is. Sometimes my memories are the only thing standing in the way to insanity. Today it is my memory of the moon. It makes me want to write a poem.

Being alone so much there isn’t anything else to do but just sit and think. It makes me think a lot about my past. You told me it is foolish to get upset when I think about my past, but I think otherwise. When I sit back and read over old things I’ve done or remember things I really don’t want to, it hurts. I don’t need anymore pain. I realize now that I’ve been locked up most my life.

I loved the year I was home. I really enjoyed it. The mistake I made is that I passed up an opportunity. It hurts. When I got out of juvy I went to stay with my uncle, and I know for a fact if I had stayed with him I would not be here now. But I wanted to go back to Nacogdoches. My home. I think so much about that chance I passed up and it hurts me. I know I had a chance for a better life. Foolish, yes, indeed. But would something else have happened in Dallas? Was it my karma to be locked up?

If a cause had been made for that to happen sometime in my life, even if I don’t remember what it was, wouldn’t the effect happen no matter where I was? A person can’t run away from the the causes they make. It follows them. There is always cause and effect for everything. Things don’t happen for no reason. There can’t be an effect without a cause, and we can’t go somewhere else and expect things to be different. There is something inside of us we have to change first. I have to understand what that is. But still, I think of my life and it makes me sad. Almost like I wasted it. I have to find a way to do better.

Life inside these walls are more like death than life. No one was ever meant to live like this. I know I did something wrong but this kind of punishment far exceeds the crime. What people don’t know is there is so much that goes on in here that the world doesn’t know about. I really don’t see how the guards can go about their life knowing what goes on in here and the things that happen and then go on about their day pretending that what they do is okay. I think a lot of them like having control over other people. It brings out the worst in them. Who knows, maybe they get off on it.

(Sonni’s note: In Nichiren Buddhism there are different life conditions that a person has and one is called “the world of animality”. It’s also called “kick the dog syndrome” That means that someone who is crapped on by their boss goes home and takes it out on his wife and kid who goes over and kicks the dog. Each person wants to get over on the person beneath him so that he can feel in control. But how can these guards go home to their families and pretend their life is okay? What do they tell their kids about what they did at work that day? Do they want anyone to know how they mistreat people? I don’t see how they would. I think in the beginning that many of people who work here start out okay. They applied for a job that pays good and has benefits. They were probably never inside a prison before. It changes them. They lose the ability to have compassion. They don’t see inmates as human beings who have value. I can’t imagine what they say to each other. They get mean. They start to enjoy causing misery. It may not happen to everyone who works here, but I think it happens to many.)

There is nothing I can do about it. I can’t get any help. If I try to say anything it just comes back on me so I stay quiet most of the time. There is no place I can complain where anyone would listen, that’s for sure, and if I could it would just get me in trouble. I can’t win in here.

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