JH Artwork

JH Artwork

Writing Exchange 2006-2018

This blog was created to display some of the powerful writing being done by incarcerated youth. Participants currently include juvenile hall facilities in Siskiyou, El Dorado, Placer, Fresno, and Butte County. Students are given journal topics and asked to write what needs to be written. Several entries are handpicked from each classroom site and posted to the blog anonymously. Students at each site then read the material together, discussing the writing and connecting with others.

Planned Exchanges

Planned Exchanges 2018: May 24; June 27; July 25; More To Come!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Entry #683
Pieces of a Puzzle

If you really knew me you would know I’m not the person people perceive me to be. You would know all the pain and secrecy hidden behind the front. If you really knew me you would know that my life’s been run by the system for the past 5 years. You would know that my child-hood innocence was stolen from me at an early age. If you really knew me you would know that I haven’t had a Thanksgiving/Christmas at home since I was 12. You would know I’ve spent every one in juvi since, not even really remembering the essence of joy, love, and faith around those times. If you really knew me you would know that I shut-down a lot to avoid feeling pain. You would know that I sometimes lie to avoid talking about certain things. If you really knew me you would know how many times I’ve fallen. You would know how I always manage to get back up. If you really knew me you would know how broken I really am. You would know how scared I am sometimes that things won’t ever change. If you really knew me you would know how hard I try day after day. You would know how close I am to giving up most days. If you really knew me you would know the same thoughts running through my head day after day. You would know how desperately I want them to go away. If you really knew me you would know I’m not the “criminal” the system makes me out to be on paper. You would know that I’m actually pretty smart and have goals in my future. If you really knew me you would know I’m not into drugs, gangs, or violence. You’d know I just want to be free. If you really knew me you would know how much I crave a normal teenage life. You would know how much I hate this place. If you really knew me you’d understand why I make the same mistakes over and over. You would know how much I hold in. If you really knew me you would know I’m a strong person. You would know my struggles make me who I am today. If you really knew me you would know how big a part of me are the people who I let in. You would know how hard it is when they’re gone. If you really knew me you would know that I don’t even really know me. You would know there are pieces of a puzzle in my life that I’m still trying to figure out. In that case, no one really knows me.

Entry #684
Fighting For Air

I have no more love to invest
Fates done dealt me a raw hand
But I keep my cards close to my chest
And my lips tighter than a raw clam
My mind is clouded with dark thoughts
But rays of hope keep trying to peek through
I wish all the synapses could be replaced with blood clots
Why can’t the world, not the people be see through
I know all of my utopian ideals
Are misplaced in this breeding ground of despair
But at least in here I don’t have to fight for my meals
Even if it does feel like I have to fight for my air.

Entry #685

If you really knew me you would know I’ve been on drugs since I was twelve years old. I’ve never gone to school. I wasted five years of my life partying on drugs that made my life miserable. I’ve gone through so much and put myself through hell all because of the trauma I went through as a kid… I’ll never be able to take it back or forget. There will always be horrible memories of my past lurking in my mind. Now that I’m sober it trips me out to think of what I’ve gone through. It makes me wonder why I couldn’t have gone a better path, why I couldn’t have made better decisions . I’m seventeen years old with nothing to show for it. I believe in hope.

Entry #686
I Don’t Want It

If you really knew me you would know my whole family but my brothers were committed to prison before their 18 birthday. If you really knew me you would know now it’s my turn up next in the spot light following my family dreams it seems. If you really knew me you would know the very first time I saw my mom as a little boy was in prison and as I got older it seemed this was all I knew. If you really knew me you would know I hate incarceration, yet still after the 6th time, I’m now being tried as an adult, waking up every morning to that pop of my door. If you really knew me you would know I’m just following in my families footsteps going to a DJJ until I’m 18  and then to a prison. If you really knew me you would know that as a little boy all I wanted to do was sell drugs and stack my dough and go to prison like my family, but now it’s my turn and I don’t want it.
It will mean missing out on family and my girlfriend. It’s a lot worse than I always thought it would be. If you really knew me, you would know I wish I would have just stayed pretending to play cops and robbers instead of going out and doing home invasions.

Entry #687
Following Footsteps
Why does life have to fall in a pattern? It’s like I get out of the hall and the next thing I know I’m sitting smoking a bowl. I always end up breaking out in handcuffs cause of this shit weed man. It just disappoints me to think I’m a bad influence for my younger sister. I told myself that I’ll never repeat my parent’s mistakes. I’m only 16 and I’m doing the same thing they were doing at 20. If I don’t find a reason to change I’ll end up in the same position they were in, spending half their lives as tweakers. My dad made a change and he has own business, but my mom couldn’t find a way to change her actions and now she’s in a coffin 6 feet under from overdosing on meth. That’s the day I said screw it and got charged  with a GTA. If that didn’t make me change, I don’t know what will.

Entry #688
Response to Writing Exchange 5-15-13 Entry #252
What Keeps Me Going?
Seeing my family again keeps me going. I can’t stand to be locked in a cell but I know that a mistake was made.  I sit in my cell and realize that I only have one life. As I sit in my cell and look at the white walls, I’m picturing my family’s face. A stupid mistake was made and I’m the only one to blame. The next time I’m in the same situation then I’ll think before I act. The walls may be white and the nights may be cold, however, each day that passes by I’m closer to home. What keeps me going is being able to hug each one of my parents someday. I paint pictures in my mind and visualize what’s going on outside. My feelings are unknown as I asked God to put me on the right path. These mistakes were ignorant, so next time I plan to listen to my family and stay out of this place. I know I’m not a criminal and that’s enough to keep me going the right way. That’s what keeps me going.                    

Entry #689

I can’t take it much longer. The slow painful ticks of the clock on evil white bricks. Each second goes by and it’s mocking my fears, for tomorrow I’ll know. Will I be free or will I be stuck here in this cold dark place? I want another chance to show all the people that don’t believe, that I can do it. I really can persevere through my struggles. I want to do it for myself of course, but I really want succeed for my grandmother. I want to be someone she is proud of. She has believed in me more than I’ve believed in myself. I want to pay her back by doing things differently this time rather than just saying I will… Talk is cheap.

Entry #690
Math Isn’t Funny

If you really knew me, you would know that I have bad asthma,
you would know that I am not a fighter.
If you really knew me, I shouldn’t have to tell you that  I am sad you would just see it in my eyes that something is bothering me beep down inside.
If you really knew me, you would know that I don’t like being around fake people. Always keep it real with me because I’m always real.
If you really knew me, you would know who my mom, dad and sisters are because I don’t do anything without their knowledge.
You would know what type of music I like, what I like to eat and what I don’t.
You would know that I’m not very good at math.
If you really knew me you would know that my favorite sports are football and basketball.
You would know what would make me laugh.
If you really knew me you would know what I’ve been through in my life.
If you really knew me you would know I want to be loved and you would give me the support that I need.
Only if you really knew me.

Entry #691

I try to make it up the hill of success.
I try and I try but it’s too much stress.
I have hands grabbing at me pulling me down.
I gave up, let go, and hit the ground.
I lay there thinking of my mom,
And how everything could go all wrong.
Got up, dusted myself clean.
I walk up to the front porch and open the screen.
I see my mother lying on the floor crying.
She was screaming “She’s dying, she’s dying.”
I lay next to her to comfort her and tell her everything’s going to be okay.
She just shrugs me off and screams “NO, NO, GO AWAY.”
I look at her all puffy and red,
I tell her she should go to bed.
I wake up the next morning white walls all around me.
Thinking to myself, what could’ve happened, how could this be?             

Entry #692
Chocolate,  No Joke

If you really knew me, you would know that I’m allergic to chocolate.
You would know that I’m a good football player.
If you really knew me, you would know that I don’t like little kid games.
If you really knew me, you would know that I go to school every day.
If you really knew me, you would know who I’m in love with.
You would know how I act in public.
If you really knew me, you would know that I hate gross people.
If you really knew me, you would know that I feel that life’s no joke.

Entry #693
Wanting Change

I want change not just for me but my family too. I never thought about what my mom went through when I was on the run, but she was not the only one to cry and go through stress. My step-dad too, he is like my real dad because he has been there since I was 5 months old.
Wanting change
My step dad was not only there for me but my mom and my brothers as well.
He helped us when we were sick or just when we needed someone to talk to or have fun with. He would make me happy when I was sad.
Wanting change
I want to get out and do good for my myself and my family.
I want to prove to them that I can do good so they don't have to go through any more stress.

Entry #694
Fake Smile and Friendly Blur

If you really knew me, you would know that I have no confidence and my self-esteem is very low.
That the smile on my face is nothing but a joke.
That I’m out here living like a sin with a burden on my chest.
If you really knew me, you would know my mom is pregnant and ready to give birth to my precious brother.
If you really knew me, you would know that I’m trying to change.
When you call me your best friend its nothing but a blur.
You would  know that I was judged and misunderstood by a lot of folks.
You would know that I don’t like to show emotion and I’m just as scared as you, so take the time to understand my struggles.

Entry #695

I’m in here trying the best I can.
I keep getting hours again and again.
The anger builds with everyone,
thinking to myself, “Just be quiet or I’ll get another one.”
It’s too late, I’ve made a mistake,
I’ve set my fate for an early bed, man I can’t wait.
Staring at the walls wide awake;
fighting the thoughts inside my head!
Wishing I could be in my own old bed.

Entry #696

If you really knew me, you would know that my favorite sports are paintball and lacrosse.
If you really knew me, you would know that I am an artist.
You would know that I am also very good at complicated arithmetic.
You would know that I have two sisters and you would know their names.
If you really knew me, you would know that I hate to read.
If you really knew me, you would know that I love to ride bikes.
You would know that I only live with my mother.
You would know that I am the only boy.
If you really knew me, you would know that school isn’t for me.
You would know how much I hate to do homework.
You would know that I like to box.
If you really knew me, you would know that I am not one to really use social media.
You would know that I taught myself how to type without looking.
If you really knew me, you would know that I enjoy playing soccer.
You would know my four closest friends.
If you really knew me you would know that my favorite candy is “Whatchamacallit!”

Entry #697

If you really knew me, you would know that I have a personality that I show to few.
You would know what I’m capable of, and you wouldn’t doubt the words I speak.
If you really knew me, you would know I’m willing to take the clothes off my back for you because if you really knew me, I really care for you.

Entry #698
A Night At The Zoo

Animals howling and banging on their cages and I can't sleep. It stops and I'm able to close my eyes for a few seconds. Then it goes again. It's 1:00 a.m., but they won't let me get any rest. I feel tired, so tired that I'm not even angry about the noise, I just want it to shut up. I hear animals screaming and doors being pounded on so loud that I can feel the vibrations through the walls. I hear people yelling at the noise telling it to just go to bed for once or begging it to calm down. These requests are ignored and the pounding continues. It sounds like a zoo filled with wild animals, but really it's just a facility filled with a bunch of juvenile delinquents.

Entry #699
True Friends

 As an elementary kid, I remember believing in true friends. Truth is I don’t really think there are true friends any more. I remember having good friends but not true friends. We are no longer close like we used to be. I think it may be the way I chose to leave them and go with drugs, money, and girls. Eventually I was in and out of juvenile hall regularly and we just couldn’t hang out anymore. They had a whole different view of the streets than I did. I believe they did it for their own good, and I’m fine with that.

Entry #700
The Blues

If you really knew me you would know... That I hate closing the blue doors. I hate the feeling that I get when I close the blue door knowing that I got myself here and knowing my punishment is closing the door and trapping myself in with only four white walls to stare at. I hate when I wake up in the middle of the night after I'm having a dream that I'm out of here. All I have to look forward to now is the next eight to fourteen months of my new life.
Entry #701
Single Father
If you really knew me you would know that I am a single father
And that I sold drugs to support my child.
You would know that I have been arrested,
You would know that I'm in Juvi,
and that I feel like a failure, but that I really want to change.
You would know that I am the one to blame.
If you really knew me you would know that my life will never be the same.                                                                                                                                          
Entry #702
My Last Christmas

Last Christmas was probably the best one of my teens. When I was younger my mom and I would go to San Francisco for a few days for our Christmas. We hadn’t done it in years, but last year we decided to give it another shot. My mom had kicked me out, so we were on rocky ground. I got, collectively, a hundred bucks from my fam, and had about five hundred to burn of my own. We shared a room, separately went shopping, and would meet at night for dinner. We had a good time, my mom didn’t complain about me getting high. It brought us back together, made us closer. If it is the last one I spend free of the next 24, I’m glad.

Entry #703

       In this moment, I am doing all that I can to make a better tomorrow for my family and myself, putting behind me a yesterday full of endless regrets and continuous mistakes. Today is a process of self-cleansing, to be a new person.
       I am finding the strength to forgive others’ their fouls against me and the humbleness to ask forgiveness from others’ that I’ve done wrong. Most importantly, I have realized true forgiveness starts with forgiving myself.  I’ve deceived myself, following that blind crowd down a dark path too many times. I’m being patient and healing from yesterday’s hurts and sorrows to get a fresh start on tomorrow.
       I’ve learned the art of self-control to control my actions; To think before acting or thoughtlessly reacting to negativity and stress, so that tomorrow I won’t make those same mistakes crashing into those same obstacles. I know my actions-either negative or positive-will bring about consequences that will have effect on my tomorrow.
       Today, I am protected by my discretion, this new found knowledge pleasant to my soul like sugar to the tongue of a small child. I am understanding that there is more to life than just my woes and worries, changing “Woe is me’s” into “Thank You, Heavenly Fathers” and thinking of more than just myself and my own problems, to be more compassionate of others’ and incorporating that Golden Rule into my daily life. I am paying back society, instead of taking and stealing back what doesn’t belong to me, realizing that the world owes me nothing.
       All in all, I am aiming towards a better tomorrow, both guilt and regret-free, walking a blameless and confident walk before yesterday’s trespassers and accusers, and no longer bound by “what ifs” and “should’ve, could’ve’ would’ve” of yesterday. They are a distant memory of the past. All that matters now is the better choices and actions I make today. They will contribute to my better tomorrow in positively rewarding ways. But what exactly will this mystic tomorrow bring to me?

Entry #704
Able To Hold Him

Sitting here thinking about my son being born in a month and a half.  He will be here so soon. I hope I can get a pass to be there when he is born. It’s my first baby and it’s a boy. I'm happy. A boy is what I wanted the whole time. The happiest day of my life will be when my son comes into the world and I'm able to hold him. Now the only thing I need to do is get out so I can be with my new family and be with my son as much as I can. Hopefully it will be every day that I'm with my son and I'm never locked up again because I'm so tired of being locked up all the time.

Entry #705
Still Locked Up

Sitting in this place,
On Thanksgiving,
Still locked up.
I want to be out and free with no one to tell me what to do or where to go.
Still locked up.
Christmas is right around the corner with no presents to open.
Still locked up.
Clouds of emotions run through me like a water slide.
Still locked up.
The same food and three minute showers.
Still locked up.
My life is like a scatter plot of connect the dots.
Still locked up.
Now I know it is time to change but in the end I'm still locked up. 

Entry #706
Done Running

In this moment I am rearranging my life, I am taking out the bad things that once damaged my life.
In this moment I am reaching my goals, I am doing what I’m supposed to without being told.
In this moment I am staying strong, I am putting down that glass pipe that once destroyed my soul.
In this moment I am preparing myself because I am no longer going to run from myself.
I am ready to go out and live out my dreams because the life I thought I once loved is not as it seems.
In this moment I am saved; I no longer feel disgraced.
He renewed my heart made it pure and clean, He gave me light now I can finally see.
Sometimes I still mess up but nobody told me this road would be easy and I don’t believe He brought me this far to leave me.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Entry #659
Waiting For My Turn
Every day I wake up from a deep dream that's taken me far from this cold facility. I lay on my bed half asleep hearing angry steel bolts "cling" with doors opening and closing, waiting for my turn. As I wait I stare up at the delusional white ceiling and think to myself, "Why is it I put myself here over and over again if I hate this shit so much?”
A million thoughts run through my mind, something similar to, "What could I have done different not to get caught?” or “Why didn't I throw the bag out when I had the chance?"
It took many long lonely nights to realize that I should be asking, "Why did I even have it in the first place?”
Was I running from my troubles? I didn't want to end up back here.  Maybe that could be it. Or it could be that fast life mentality. Those inspiring movies my bros and I grew up watching:  Good Fellas, Scarface, Blow, and Cocaine Cowboys.  Being a drug lord fugitive was something I wanted to be a part of.
This mentality brought me to 3 minute showers, beat up Bob Barkers, shabby attitudes and blind misguided inmates. Locked up.
I’m waiting for my commitment to end so I can give it my all, so I make myself and family proud for once. I try so hard to dodge the discipline that comes my way.  I tend to feel targeted and alone. Maybe it's just me? Regardless, this gives me time in my cell to pace around and think about my future. I'm ready to pursue happiness.

Entry #660
As A Young Boy
Time would go by and me and mom would go to a big building with a bunch of windows just to see dad, but I kind of just thought that was normal.
I would only see him for a while and I would ask him, “Why are you here?” but he never responded. As a little kid I kind of just thought that was normal.
As I got older he came home and very seldom went back to that big building with a bunch of windows and I kind of just thought that was normal,
It took me a while to realize that every time he went back to that big building with a bunch of windows, it wasn’t really normal.

Entry #661
I am stressed and I think it would be good to get it out on paper. I’m about to spend my last day as a minor in juvenile hall. Yes, I’m about to turn 18. I am getting off probation when I get out and getting cut loose on all my charges in Colorado. Sure it sounds like I shouldn’t be stressed... but I am stressing on the things that are happening on the outs that I cannot control. Like the fact that my little brother is being bullied by my big brother who’s trying to act like a father. Or that my girlfriend and my mom are at each other’s throats, literally fist fighting. Or that I am going to be homeless again as soon as I get out. So yeah, I’m stressed but I just need to remember that I can’t change anything while I’m in here. I can just hope for the best for when I get out. I am just going to try to stay positive, get into school, get a job, get a place of my own, and beat my addiction to the ground so it won’t bother me anymore.

Entry #662
A Good Shooting
People are tryin’ to get in my way; I used to call them friends, but I've done some thinking and realize they're lost and miserable. I've found my way and now I'm moving on. I don't have time to let anyone hold me back because I'm shooting for the stars. I also need to get out of my own way. But I'm ready to do my thing, no worries.

Entry #663
I Need Change
I wish I could change but, it's hard… all I know is the streets. I wish I could stay away from the street life. I wish I could make money in a legal way. It’s hard to get a job because I have two felonies, so I run back to the cold streets, trying to not get killed out there. There are all types of obstacles, wondering how long this life is going to last and trying to live to see another day. Is life is just a game? I’m locked up; I tell myself to change. Damn I need to make a change.     

Entry #664
Clean For Today
I appreciate NA.
I appreciate NA for all it has come to bring me in my sobriety, and for all it continues to bring and show me. I feel like a little kid learning to walk again, but these steps take me to a different path.
I appreciate the people in my life.
I appreciate how they stuck with me through the hard and the bad and the ones I met through NA who ended up meaning more to me than my so called "friends"
I appreciate food and sleep.
I appreciate the morals I have come about with sobriety.
I appreciate not having size 00 pants too big for me.
I appreciate not having to worry if a needle is used or if I’m going to contract Hep C.
I appreciate being able to say I never had to do anything I didn't wanna do to get a sack.
I appreciate my track mark scars.
I appreciate my track mark scars for always reminding me about my struggle, but also reminding me about one of the greatest learning experiences in my life.
I appreciate not always having to look behind my back, not just for cops but for anyone in the game. The game is a free for all. No one is your friend.
I appreciate getting arrested for showing me that everyone snitches, even your "friends" and for showing me I’m a lot better off sober than staying up for 20+ days and having to sleep for a week straight.
I appreciate meth.
I appreciate meth for giving me memories I will never forget, good or bad, but memories that I can look back on now and learn, laugh or move towards forgetting. I appreciate meth for showing me what true friends and family are, and for putting the people who are now in my life there.
I appreciate being clean just for today.

Entry #665
Now that I am incarcerated I can’t help but think how I’ve taken all the love and care from both of my parents for granted over the years. I’ve always known that they love me but now that I’ve been away from them for nearly two months I now fully and completely comprehend that when they say they would do anything for me that they really do mean it. In the past I never fully believed them when they said that simple but powerful sentence because I always thought that I was just a drug addict and that no one would do anything for me because who could love a piece of dirt drug addict? I also guess that it’s impossible to truly understand the love a parent feels for their child until you yourself are a parent and considering that I am not a parent yet this is a factor of why I never believed them. But looking back and thinking about everything they’ve done for me, all the money spent on rehabs, all the time invested, all the tears shed, all the wasted energy spent for my well-being, I now realize that they would truly do anything for me (as long as it is legal and in my best interest) no matter how bad I have already hurt them or have messed up. While I am incarcerated they still come 2 or 3 times a week to see me even if they have to miss work! With all the times I’ve hurt them and they still come to see me, if that doesn’t show love then I don’t know what does. I now truly and honestly appreciate my parents and all the love and care they have given me over the years and still continue to give me.

Entry #666
What’s Going On In Life?
 Before I got locked up I was homeless and it was my fault we lost out home. I wish I could take it all back but now I can’t. My older brother and sister have moved on. Now I’m locked up with my mom staying with her friend in a motel, not knowing when she will get money to even get herself some food. It’s all my fault. I think of it daily and now my release is all depending on her getting a house because my PO said he might not let me out or he might have me go stay at a foster home for awhile. 5 more days and the choice will be made.

Entry #667
Healing Souls
Fathers home
Mother lies alone in bed
And weeps,
Oldest brothers in the streets
For the baby to eat,
Says he has friends
Knew it was the real struggle
When hunger was calling them
By name,
Pains in the stomach
And they never seem to go away,
Mommas on her knees
Pleading with auntie to let them stay
Knowing deep down that this is the only way,
Mommas telling him,
“Son please don’t cry,”
Says she’s got them covered
But there are tears in her eyes,
Living from motel to motel
Fearing what’s coming next
Child custody revoked
Now mommas little angels
Are scattered
Living with strange folks,
But all just yesterday this seemed like a joke
Couldn’t comprehend
That day by day
Daddy was spending the money
On dope,
Youngest son crying and screaming
Saying,“Momma please don’t go,”
Lost and forgotten was the family’s dream
To take a vacation and hit the road,
All they ever prayed for was
For God to heal their souls.

Entry #668
One Day
      One day I came home and my brother started calling me names and he went after me. I told him to stop and he didn’t and I beat him up. He tried to call the police but I wouldn’t let him, so he tried to leave. I stopped him by twisting his arm pretty hard. The next day I went to school and told my counselor, who told the principle, and she called the police. They saw the cuts on my arm so they took me to the hospital and they kept me in handcuffs. After we got to the hospital they wrote me up a ticket. I asked, “Why did you give me a ticket?” They said it was, “because of your brother’s arm.” I went to the crisis center. I spent the night there and it really sucked so the next day I went home and called it a day. I went to school on Wednesday and probation showed up.  Now I’m back in the hall.

Entry #669
I have been trying to get court off my mind and the judges voice out of my head telling me if I keep on living this way I'm going to, “end up dead." I don’t care what this system has to say. When I hear those comments from the judge my heart fills with hate. People don't know the life that I lead or the crazy thoughts that run through my head. I hate when people try to judge me by the way that I look or me past. I made big changes, but people don't seem to care. I keep hearing the judge’s voice, telling me that I'm a menace to society, that I don't deserve to have my freedom, or that I will never make it in life.
I'm tired of people thinking that they know me or how my future will turn out. I will show the judge, the DA, and the rest of the court that they were completely wrong. I am going to be successful when I get out.

Entry #670
Smoking Hot
When I turned fourteen I thought "Today is the day." It was my first day of seventh grade and I had a crush on this girl for a couple years. I told myself I was going to ask her out. It was second period P.E. She was in my all my classes except History so I thought, “Better now than never,” right?  Wrong. I walked across the street to smoke a cigarette. As I did my crush asked me why I was over there.  Fumbling, I said nothing but "Just getting a soda from my aunt." She said "OK, but hurry. P.E.'s about to start, and get me one too." And she walked away. Of course my aunt didn’t live there, but she didn't see me pull a cigarette out of my pack, so I was OK. I headed back to school, found her, and said," She didn't have another one, sorry." She didn't know I was a smoker or a juvenile delinquent so I said, “Screw it” and asked her out.  She said, “Yeah.” We’ve been together ever since.

Entry # 671
A New Perspective
I grew up around always having a nice clean house and a stocked fridge as well as any other necessities. Additionally, I had things I just wanted for the hell of it and I was almost never told no. The friends that I'd had since 1st grade (who were also the only people my parents allowed me to hang out with), also lived under similar conditions. I'd never heard of the "ghetto" or "drugs" or people who weren’t as lucky as me. I honestly thought it was just a myth for the longest time until about the 4th grade when I began to hang around with this one girl who eventually became my best friend at that time. I remember that I thought she didn't dress as well as my other friends, but to a 9-year-old that didn't really matter, and besides she had a great personality. I remember asking my dad after school every day for months if she could come over or me go to her house, but for some reason he always said no and always had some excuse I would never completely understand. Eventually he was able to see I wasn't going to give up and said yes. I still remember the shock and amazement on her face as she walked through my house saying how big and clean it was. I was confused because most of my friends’ houses were twice as big and nice. Then I offered her some food and she was shocked at the variety and how much we had. She said she never had food at her house. I think it was at that moment I learned not everyone was like me in that aspect, and while I'd been comparing myself to people better off than me and taking what I had for granted, I never thought of those who were less fortunate. It turns out my friend lived in a run-down 2 bedroom house with 7 other people supported by a single parent and she was lucky to get a meal a day at home and showered maybe once a week. I was angry with my parents for holding me back from the realities of life just to hold onto their "reputations", but I was grateful to have experienced life through a new perspective. Now whenever I start to feel bad for myself, I think of the people worse off who have no control over their situations, and it gives me hope and determination to get through my struggles and help others with theirs.

Entry #672
I Thought It Was Normal
What's normal for me is not normal for you,
My life is a mystery, and here is your clue:
I was raised around fighting and I was raised around drugs,
So when I grew up they were both things I loved.
I never knew better, it's how I was raised,
Only figuring what’s wrong after I aged.
I'm just a little too late,
because I'm now locked in the hall,
The thing that I hate.
My behavior was implemented; it was something I learned,
I don't blame my family because life threw me a curve.
I did what I did because I thought it was normal,
But now I look back and I picture the horrors.
I now see the errors in my actions,
I done messed up, I don't deserve compassion.

Entry #673
I appreciate my grandma because she is all I have.
When my mom passed, she was there for me the whole way.
If it wasn’t for her I don’t know what my life would be like.
I thought I could look up to my sister but she needed help herself.
I appreciate my grandma because she doesn’t have to do the things she does for me.
I appreciate my grandma for being herself, telling it how it is and not holding anything back from me.
I appreciate my grandma because she loves me and I love her.
I appreciate my grandma because she feeds me, takes care of me, bought my clothes when I was young and  took me to the doctor  when I got sick.
I appreciate my grandma for being here; she come visits me, came to my courts dates, and will come to get me when I get released.
I appreciate my grandma because she’s my heart and the main love of my life. 

Entry #674
Rebellious Life
Not being home in my bed fast asleep at three in the morning, but instead up with the homies chilling… I don’t know, I kind of just thought that was normal. Being rebellious and running away… I don’t know, I kind of just thought that was normal. Hating on my mom, being rude to my family… I don’t know, I kind of just thought that was normal.

Entry # 675
I appreciate the rehab I am going to for accepting me so that I can become a better me. I appreciate my mom for packing all my things while I’m locked up so that my stuff will be ready for me when I leave the hall and head to rehab. I am so excited to go to my new group home and start working and focusing only on me and my recovery. Only a few more days and I’m out of here, thank God! I can't wait to put my real clothes back on and wear some make-up. The best part is I can eat real food again. I love pizza and I've been craving it for weeks now... Only a few more days and I can have some! I have about $27 dollars in my intake stuff, just enough to get my nails done! Yes, yes, yes! I'm so excited to leave and go somewhere brand new: new people, new school, and new home. I just hope it's going to be the best place, like the perfect place for me to be and start over. I can feel this is going to be a start or a new beginning. Sacramento here I come!

Entry #676
A Chance
 I never thought I had a chance. The only roads I could see led to an early death most likely caused by a bullet or locked away, never to see freedom again. I never wanted that to happen, no one really does, but I learned to be okay with it. Now in my life things have changed and new pathways have opened up. They're not much, but at least now I know there is a chance. Knowing that there is a chance is what changes things and gives me hope for a brighter future. With this chance I now have a choice in what to do with my life. When you see me on top just remember I've been through the struggle, but with a little bit of help I'm getting out. Opportunities are all around me, what I do with them is my decision.....

Entry #677
I Appreciate
I appreciate my son because, he’s a miracle baby!
I appreciate my family because; they never turned their backs on me,
I appreciate school because; I need it in my life & future,
I appreciate my dad because; he never gives up on his kids,
I appreciate my mom because, without her I wouldn’t be here today,
I appreciate my little sister because; it feels good to have someone look up to me,
I appreciate my little brothers because; they always get my day started by jumping on me!
I appreciate my older brother because, I want to be like him and one day have a family of my own,
I appreciate mostly everything in my life because; it’s making me who I am today.

Entry #678
Out At Eighteen
I kind of just thought that crime was a normal part of life. My brothers, dad, and sister were always getting into trouble so I started picking it up over the years. I have been in and out of juvenile hall and even jail once. When I recognize this was wrong was when me and my girl had our daughter. I have been locked up for the first year of her life. When I’m released on my birthday I will need to work to get her back.  CPS has my daughter.  I know this isn’t normal because my daughter isn't home with her daddy that she barely knows me. This really has made a huge impact in my life: getting her taken and now having to fight to get her back. But it made me realize that I want better for me and my family and daughter. We'll my brothers, dad, and sister were always out robbing and stealing cars, bringing home guns and leaving them out on the table. They had drugs all over the house and were often fighting with each other, hurting themselves. Being in and out of crime with an unstable home seemed normal.   Now I know different.

Entry #679
I Appreciate
I appreciate my mom and dad because
Without them I wouldn’t be here,
I appreciate my baby’s mom because
Without her my daughter wouldn’t be here,
I appreciate my daughter because
She filled in my heart the part of me that was missing,
I appreciate mistakes because
Without mistakes means no lessons before dying,
I appreciate second chances because
Without second chances means I didn’t fail,
I appreciate God because
Without God I wouldn’t have anyone to turn to when the storm hits,
I appreciate Faith because
Without Faith I wouldn’t have the strength when I’m locked in this holding tank,
I appreciate life because
It gives me options to be what I really want to be,
I appreciate words because
Without words this page would have been blank,
I appreciate being locked up because
It shows me what I need to work on.

Entry #680
 Everywhere I go that damn fly has been following and watching me. It’s raining. I have a headache. Where's a flyswatter when you need one? Oh that fly just set me off! Always testing me, flying in my face. Hurry up and land. Oh yes, he just landed on the kitchen table. I grab a rag that's hanging on a chair and bam! Finally out of my life. Never gonna mess any of my days up again. The rain stopped and the sun came out. I'm out of juvenile hall.

Entry #681
My Life
I appreciate my family because they are always there for me. My family helps me with my addiction by telling me what it does and how it affects my life. I want to change my life around by getting rid of that habit, because juvenile hall isn’t the place for me. Being here makes me think about a lot of things and how it affects my family. I think about the things can I do to keep from coming back here? My mom picked me up one night when I was stoned. I was embarrassed because I disappointed my mom. She wanted me to stop smoking, get my grades up and attend school. My life has been rough not having a dad to play catch with. I had a father who didn’t love me. That affected me the most, but my mom has always been there for me to give me love and attention I needed. Being different is hard because a lot of people make fun of me and that hurts my feelings. I’m used to it, so I don’t let it get to me anymore. I have learned a lot of new things including that friends don’t last forever, but family is always there no matter what. School has been rough for me. I have always struggled with the fact that I do what most teenagers do. Now that I’m a junior, I’m focused on credits and graduating, successful things like that will get my life on track.

Entry #682
That’s It
Sitting here locked down and tired of it. One reason is because my son might not have my last name, all because I'm locked up and not out. It’s a struggle in my life with all I have to go through. If I would of never got locked up this time I wouldn't have to go deal with half of what I do. But now when I get out everything probably going to be back to how it was when I was out the last time. I don't know if I want it to go back to how it was. I just want to be there for my son and that's it. He’s the only one that I need to be there for, nobody else. I can care less about all the lames acting hard.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Entry #633
Caught In The Action
My fed addiction,
vicious flinted smoke,
breathtaking eagerness
taking over a rebellious sobriety.
Feeling caught in the action,
fumbling battles, craving the raging sea,
caring grief, telling me it’s not too late.
Enraged game calling my name,
I can’t stop the hesitated high.
Appalled feelings are no longer sober,
craving addiction takes the floor once more.
I see stained glass as I look out my window,
I’m locked up

Entry #634
Passing addiction,
holding me accountable for my drunken love.
Anguish triumphant,
happiness dead.
The deep royal sky goes to black
fighting for my soul within these white walls.
Blue doors taunting me when I look forward,
drowning in the sunset beige hell I have created.
As my nights go to days,
my days go to black,
I still hope.

Entry #635
Forgotten in a Deserts Shadow
Collapsed behind the white walls
In the same position
I'm not a thug
Forgotten in a deserts shadow with ash on my face
In jail
Screaming twisted anger and anxiety building up in me
Loosening the cuffs
To be let out
Is magic possible?
Trying to remove the knife from my side
Terrible pain, dazed with shame
Victimized from all the lies
Attempts to bring back my pride
Grateful for all that I have.

Entry #636
Courage runs through my veins
indulging me with a sense of determination
to persevere through even the most melancholy of times.
As I sit on my slab of concrete I inquire feelings of helplessness
causing me to feel depressed.
Reluctantly I force the sweet memories of lemon grass and violet fields out of my head.
For now I am surrounded by flint smoke colored walls
in a cage with one deliberate locked door
providing me with the sense of a crazed animal.
Feelings of fatigue and liveliness collide within,
neither diminishing nor accepting my faith and optimism
which pumps my heart to keep me alive.

Entry #637
Worth Something
I believe that I should live every day like it’s my last. I believe I could be whatever I want to be. …that I should not be in this program. …that one day I will own my own business. I believe that two is greater than one. …that no one should get left behind. …that I will have a great life. I believe I will get out of juvenile hall and do well in life. …that I am worth something. …that every person is equal. I believe I like myself more than anyone likes me. …that I have to like myself before someone likes me. I believe that I like myself for who I am.

Entry #638
The Goer
Stink eyed stare at the teacher
he said, "go see the preacher."
Looking victimized
Feeling paralyzed
Jumping out the window
My Soon to be wife
Is a soon to be widow
Just feelin' the bliss
All I want is
One last kiss

Entry #639
Every Day Life Goes On
What is it that I fear?
A journey long,
Or a problem near,
Knowing that someone cares,
Or giving away the trust I hold dear?
What is it that I fear?
Knowing a loved one is lost,
Or understanding living life has a fatal cost?
What is it that I fear?
Believing that I can succeed,
Or knowing there are challenges that I cannot beat?
What is that I fear?
I fear special memories,
The ones that make me emotional,
I fear succeeding and leaving those who I am close to,
I fear failure because I did things I wasn’t supposed to,
And most of all I fear living,
For to live means to die,
And to die means my struggle was not worth the try.
As the end of this poem draws to a near,
My question to you is,
What is it that you fear?

Entry #640
Steel bolts locking in the blue doors,
Thin tile beds,
Delusional white walls observing my patients,
I'm powerless, neglected.
Cold steel sink reflecting off the angry cement floor.
Sober hate tearing me down.
Fake smiles and false affections from people who boil with envy.
They pretend they care but they’re steadily neglecting me.
Why stab your jealousy inside of me?
I put it aside so I won’t feel so empty,
Alone and also rejected,

Entry #641
Prison Dignity
Dreams of poinsettia cheeks
Soulless deceit brought on by grey scale sleep
Serenaded hope runs from me
Pitiful kegs full of demons
Citron money puffing green grapes
Saint swisher
Pounds of pride dripping wet
Prison dignity watching Netflix
Mom's regret fills my eyes
"By any means necessary."

Entry #642
As I arrive to this invention
An addressing glimmer reminds me of where I am
Holding the enraged addiction
Banned from my cobwebbed feelings
I realize my volcano is going to explode
Barefoot in the wilderness
My mind tells me, "Stop now. Confront the engine."
Breaking my teeth as I tell them my feelings
Safe and secure now,
I begin to imagine telling myself, "You don't have to be scared anymore."
Slowly I return to reality
Accelerated, everything stops.

Entry #643
Favorite Things
When I come home and he knows I’ve been tweaking, these are some of my least favorite things.
Getting all sucked up not eating for days, these are some of my least favorite things.
Getting all spun out doing anything for my next high, these are some of my least favorite things
Being up for days lashing out at anyone in my way, these are some of my least favorite things.
When I’ve been clean for a while and he knows it’s my choice that’ll be my favorite thing.

Entry #644
Hesitant for my freedom,
Confusion dominates my overwhelmed mind,
Anticipating the demons that I know will show up with gold,
Greatness will tempt me to cheat and turn cold.
Fear is not involved and determination will get me through,
The clear morning sunlight and the deep amber glow of evening will not be blocked by brick walls,
I will not be tricked,
But if the devil gets ahold of me,
I’ll be walking with 36 in my clip.

Entry #645
The Sun Rise
Ruby Red sunrise is negotiating with the darkness.
I don't even know what to expect besides
lonliness, anger, and regret.
Opinions keep mocking me,
screaming you're a fool.
Family is appalled,
not understanding why I seem so crippled and fall.
Rays of hope dry up my tearful eyes,
still feeling victimized from my tortured high.
I'm not a creature lurking in the shadows,
I'm a timid girl, afraid of the dark,
ready for a new start.

Entry #646
Should Be Free
I believe that nobody’s perfect. Everyone has their own personality. Everyone has their own unique laugh and smile. Everyone has their own swag. Everyone makes mistakes--some of us learn from them and some don’t.I believe in myself because I’ve changed my ways and every time I fall down I don’t give up. I just pick myself up and keep moving forward.
I believe in love.
I believe in GOD and that He’s by my side all the time no matter what I do or go through.
I believe in Martin Luther King, Jr. and that he fought a good fight and did whatever he could to get equal rights.
I believe in Rosa Parks because she stood up for herself.
I believe in fairness, fairytales, spirits, and hard work.
I believe in marriage.
I believe that education is important because without a high school diploma or GED you really can’t get a job.
I believe in my goals.
I believe in magic.
I believe in good and bad luck.
I believe that I should be free.
I believe in talking loud and giggling.
I believe in my dreams.
This I Believe……

Entry #647
Broken Lens
Breathtaking bullets aimed at another youth.
Police cars speeding, flashing red and blue.
Wrong choices off filthy dope.
All I hear is ringing from the shots and
screaming sirens in the distance.
No longer enraged, seeing the murderous red on the ground.
Frozen on the spot, detached from reality.
Back of car, fatal cuffs locked on wrists.
No longer seeing things the same, I don't think I ever will.

Entry #648
My New Life
I walk through fields of pavement
All I see are walls of death
Dry blue skies
Dope is so lonely
Now sitting behind a steel door as if it's some sort of new world
Controlled by masters
I guess it’s time to learn some manners
Sitting in my pod for 8-14
Why me
Missing the fresh smell of lemon grass
Now sitting in class and trying to graduate
Maybe everyone was right, it is too late
I must give myself faith to show everyone different
It is time to change for the better
For my family and friends

Entry #649
I believe life is hard, but I can succeed. All that I will ever need is my belief to become something in life, not a miserable person who threw his life away. I notice more and more obstacles pop up from out of nowhere. One day can be the best day of your life, but it can change within a matter of seconds. You can be on the right track in life and make one mistake and everything changes like getting locked up for example. People then start to look at you differently. You are no longer that person who can succeed in life; you’re a criminal who just got released. People also tell you that you will never amount to anything in life. I believe some people can change, but only if it’s what they really want to do. I believe I have all the support I’ll ever need from my mom, my siblings, and teachers. They all try and lead me down the right path, but we’re all human and we make mistakes. I always seem to get locked up for things I repeatedly do, so I no longer consider them as mistakes. I believe money doesn’t bring happiness to everyone. I believe that you can make it through any struggle and can get far in life. I also believe I can change everyone’s thoughts of me and I can finish high school and become certified as a real estate agent. I believe no one should ever quit believing in themselves.

Entry #650
6 Hollows
It was a cold summer night,
I felt the summer breeze as I reached into my bag of paint,
Graffiti runs through my veins,
Deep in the yard with my crew,
Lost in the world that I once knew,
Trying to be like the one I look up to,
Suddenly I saw a young dude strolling through,
My boy asked him what he was up to...
He pulled out a gun and said nothing new.
I told him, “It's cool, no need to shoot,
Keep it pushing and we will to.”
My bro hot and ready
began to say something dumb and edgy.
He pulled out his steel and let 6 hollows loose.
I looked around and saw someone on the ground.

Entry #651
I believe that we can achieve anything if we try.
I believe that everybody is different in their own ways.
…that we can all use some change.
I believe that the ocean works in mysterious ways.
…that the world is here to stay.
I believe that we should help the poor.
...that when somebody falls to pick them off the floor.
I believe that everybody is special.
…that love has no price.
...that everybody has to take chances in life.
I believe that there’s nothing that we can’t do.
...that everybody needs an education.
...that we make our own decisions.
I believe that America is a good country. 
I believe that everybody has a good side and a bad side.
...that people get incarcerated to learn lessons.
...that everybody makes mistakes.
...that we have to respect our elders.
I believe that we can change the world.

Entry #652
Stolen Youth
Inferno bullet, offending, yet intrusive,
Aggressive glock, fatal shot, resentful wanderer
Shallow grave, stone legacy,
Affected family, detached mother, threatening father
Stolen youth, virtuous soul
Benevolent patron, supreme rapture

Entry #653
The Change of a Man
Anxious to learn the news of my future.
Is it a bright path? Or a dark tunnel of despair.
Hope for the best and expect the worst.
That's all I can do in this time of helplessness.
Nobody's there to witness my sins.
They say he's always watching, but can it be true?
If so then I'm guilty of all.
If not then I'm innocent with a clean conscious..
Pondering on the things I have done.
I can't take it back, but sometimes I wish I could.
I have been told this is called regret,
Something I have never felt before.
Today I will accept the consequences for my the actions of my past.
It's the mistakes we learn from that make us who are.
I will forever hold my name from birth even though it's a new person I have become

Entry #654
Level Head
When I was younger my Dad kidnaped me from my mom. I was only three years old so I didn’t know what was going on. My dad took me all the way to Wyoming. It only took my mom three days to find me and get me back. My mom always told me that God picked her to be my mom, because he knew she would be the best mom for me. Right now I am locked up in juvenile hall and my mom is going through a struggle with my brothers and sister. She has been addicted to drugs for many years and rock bottom has just caught up to her. Even though my mom is going through a lot and is on the verge of losing everything I still have to have hope. I think it is a miracle that I am here. If I was out there I would be caught up in all the drama. Don’t get me wrong I still feel bad for my brothers and sister, but someone has to have a level head in the family. Also maybe I am here to learn the ins and outs of addiction so I can have some insight for my mom when I get out. I believe that God has a plan.

Entry #655
Deep Space
Forgotten dreams flow from the wrists of the children left behind.
Left to wander the deep space that they know as their mind.
I'm forever searching for the answers that i may never find.
Simply craving the gentle touch only provided by the kind.
Longing for the one day where I'll finally have my chance to shine.

Entry #656
A Single Flower
absolute and complete all in itself
pink and green water groves
sitting next to it is where I think about the sun, stars, and a beautiful rose
where I am and where I’ll go
mirrors filled with smoke, or,
rehab and hope I guess
I’ll never know until I go
it’s worth a chance
recovery or dope
it’s a blessing I even get the choice to go
will I sink effortlessly, or,
frighteningly stay afloat
the future only knows.

Entry #657
Feverish Thoughts
Dusty mountain train
drifts in deep royal torment
Intrigued by optimistic speed
Racing through alienated thoughts
Kicking trash
glass bottles and cash
Festivals of regret
Unbearable light shifting through flames
of flashing sand washed driftwood
If you’re caught believing
Sympathy is lost
because of the monsters acts.

Entry #658
Being The Change
I believe that I should change to make the world a better place…
I believe I should speak up for what I believe in…
I believe I shouldn’t be scared to express my feelings…
I believe I shouldn’t be indirect about my feelings…
I believe I should love myself because no one else will…
I believe I should have love for others…
I believe I shouldn’t have hate or anger toward others…
I believe we should get along…
I believe there should be no such thing as stereotypes…
I believe we should not be prejudice…
I believe there should have never been a thing as prejudice…
I believe we all were made the same…
I believe color doesn’t define a race of a person…
I believe violence should stop…
This is a poem of what I believe in…


Friday, September 5, 2014

Entry # 617

Hidden behind green eyes of folly and growing puddles of wet fear
Thoughts seem to creep like an addict in the night- to a shadowed corner of familiar demise
So desperately screaming to be helped, healed. But what lies within is much more than a spirit gone astray
Memories gather like a crowd and taunt feverishly. The image of an addict trapped within a little girl, mirroring dreams of pipes instead of prosperity.
The mind is a beautiful cave; one too familiar seems more dangerous than forgiving, darker and unchanged than most.
Being broken would be a much easier pleasure. To have to face green eyes would be an unfathomable fear.
Years pass, slowly the concept of a pulse and a life fade distantly.
How have green eyes become so destroyed? Years ago thoughts could not imagine the things seen, the smoke inhaled, or the suffering inflicted.
Virgin eyes once more view the demon addiction: glass, rock, and this way of life.
Does this mean I will never succeed in the dream I once believed?

Entry # 618
I Believe

I believe in myself when no one else believes in me
I believe in you when you don’t believe in yourself
I believe in rehabilitation and the fact I know I can make it,
this time…
I believe in the new me and the fact that I will stay clean
I believe in setting the old me free
And pray to God that it will leave
I believe I can change
Even though the thought of it is alien and strange
I believe in starting over
And it never being too late
I believe I can make it and maybe you can too.
I believe

Entry # 619

Drinking is my curse,
Demons are surrounding me,
In the darkness they will lurk,
I try to confront them, but they no longer disperse.
In my short years it’s been hard to survive,
having these demons torture me from on the inside,
It’s hard to hold on,
but I’m still standing strong,
holding on to my humanity before it is gone.
I’m trying so hard to learn from my mistakes,
I now look to God and pray for his grace,
while struggling every day with these demons I face.
I’m looking in the mirror,
seeing wasted years,
brining my family nothing but tears.
I need to learn before it’s too late, I don’t want to fall victim to a disastrous fate,
So one day I can enter those gold pearly gates.
I know what I need,
No longer will I plead,
I will be successful,
This is what I believe.

Entry # 620
Pointing At Myself

The door is locked and the lights are dim
It's been three hours but retrospect still won't let this night end
How am I supposed to accept a life absent of intimacy and void of love
What if my mom stops coming when I tell her it happened just because
I would like to point fingers or say it was because the devil and I had a contract signed
But in reality no ones to blame except for myself and that compact nine

Entry # 621
All The Good Stuff

        My belief is that my family comes first because a long time ago my brothers always put me first. They used to take me places and do a lot of things with me when I was little even though I was so little they probably didn’t really want me around. They sometimes told me they were doing grownup stuff and I couldn’t be there. However they would usually stop and go take me out somewhere. One special moment with my brothers was when they took me out fishing one day to the river in Miami Oklahoma. It was a nice not day and we were fishing for spoonbill. It’s a very big fish. I threw my line out and brought it back in and threw it out again repeatedly. Finally, I caught something on my line. I thought it was a big stick at first but then it started pulling me in the water. My brother had to grab me before I went in and I started to reel. When it was on land that damn fish was bigger than me. It was 101 pounds! My brothers and I were in the newspaper. That was the best day I ever had with them when I was little.
 I also I believe that family comes first because I have a little girl. I don’t want her to have the same type of life I did. The first time I held her in my arms I wanted to be in her life because my dad was not there for me. When I was little I wanted my dad to show up and take me to the park, or to take me swimming, or on a hike, or even to the candy store. It would have been a great experience with my dad, so that’s why I’m going to be there for my little girl and do all the things I never did or got to do with my father. I'd like to be able to take my daughter to the park and to the movies .She will like that and I want to take her to go swimming. I even want to put her in mixed martial arts so she can learn control and can watch out for herself even when I can’t be there. I’d like to take her shopping for clothes and little things she needs like toys, shampoo and stuff like that. I would like to take her to the penny candy store and show her all the good stuff. Also I would like to take her to the fair to ride rides, win prizes and stuff that I never really got to do with anyone. So I’m going to be that father for my daughter. She’ll have a lot of what I never had or for myself. And that’s what I believe……   

Entry # 622

I believe that my Mom is hurting.
 that I need to do good.
 that I will do 8-14 months.
I believe that I will have a wonderful future.
 I will be with the one I love.
 I will be an honorable man to her.
 I will have a great job.
I believe I will have 2 kids.
 I will be an excellent role model for them.
 I will try my hardest.
I believe
I believe I can behave
 I can be a positive person to society.
 I can help my MOM.
I believe I need to move out of my hometown.
 I need to get my diploma.
 I need to STOP being stupid.
I believe I told the one I love to stay out and that she came back.
I believe I haven’t left yet.
I believe that it is August 2014.
I believe that she is a great young lady.
I believe we will be together someday.

Entry # 623
Individual Effort

I believe that people are people but when they are put in facilities and in front a judge they are seen as wild animals and a disgrace to society. I believe that some people are raised in hostile families and been through so much that they feel like there is no more hope. I believe that there are so many people that have so much potential to bring to the world but they are so afraid that other people won’t accept them because of the life that they lead or the way that they look. I believe that if there were more parents that took better care of their children, kids would be more motivated to stay at home and do more positive things with their time. I believe that we all can make the world a better place by giving a helping hand to that one person that really needs it, or welcoming those people that you know have potential regardless what their background says they look like, but it starts by people putting their own individual effort in.

Entry # 624
I’m Done

I was released in May from a small one month sentence and I got out on ankle monitor. My first night home my dad told me he was super happy to have me back home. The next morning I was gone; I cut the Ankle Monitor and left a note. I was on the run for a month and all I did was run around smoke weed snort cocaine and drink. I tried to convince myself I had everything going right and that I wasn’t doing anything wrong but in the back of my head I was telling myself I’m stupid, I should have stayed home so I didn’t have to look over my shoulder every day. I finally got caught for stealing.  Although I was upset I got caught I was also relieved that I could finally move on and do good. I was committed to a program and it’s a total of 6 months. You do 3 months in and 3 months out. I served an uncounted month before I was committed so I’ve served a total of 4 months so far. I have been doing really good. I’ve been doing my counseling,  getting my home visits, not getting in trouble and I think I’m set to be getting out fairly soon. I’m really excited to go home, feel free, go to school, start being social again, and seeing all my friends and family. I’m going to get a job and make up lost credit. When I turn sixteen I’m going to try and get my G.E.D. Once I complete probation I’m going to move out of my dad’s house, stay with someone else, but continue the right path. I’m done with this lifestyle. I want better for myself and I want people to think better of me and not be a disappointment anymore.

Entry # 625
Showers, Buttons, and Last Time

The first thing I will do when I walk through the doors to the outside world is yell inappropriate phrases into the sky, and I hope everyone hears me! During the 45 minute car ride home, the only thing that will come across my mind is that I can take a shower that will last longer than 3 minutes. After my my shower I will drag myself to my room, take all my cloths out of my drawers, face my fears and try them on.  When my pants don’t button, I will swear, cry, and yell. The upside is that I’ll get some new clothes. I think I’m getting a fresh start until I get to school and I hear all my "friends" saying, “She’s out. I wonder how long it will last this time.” Hopefully there won’t be a next time and this will be the last.

Entry # 626
Second Chances

I believe in second chances. I have screwed off most of my life doing stupid things that don’t benefit me or anybody else around me. I'm locked up, and for the first time to be honest, happy to be. I probably would have died out their robbing and being the thief that I was. Selling drugs for a quick buck when I could have got shot in the process. I was being careless and stupid in a certain part of my life where I had no room to screw up. When I got locked up I was pissed off at the world at first. But then I realized it was for my best interest and it was my second chance to make things right, not just with me, but the people I have hurt the most, my family. I get to see them again and to show them that I really care about my life and most definitely want to make them proud. I used to be the wrestler everybody talked about. I used to me that football player everybody wanted to see play. But even though I have screwed up I’m in for my second chance and plan to be the successful person that I have always dreamed of. I want to raise my son right to look up to his father and to be there for him when he needs me the most. To not being involved in criminal activity makes me feel good about myself. Crimes were a way to make money for my boy and as long as he had a smile on his face that’s all that seemed to matter. But being locked up made me realize that it was the biggest mistake I have ever made in my entire life. I now know that it was pushing me away from the people that cared about me the most. I’m most thankful to my parents and everybody that I have done wrong to give me this second chance. I will be able to be a success with my life now that I can see clearly.

Entry # 627
Fresh Out

Sitting in the hall is a struggle when you have a baby on the way. Especially when your locked up and aren’t there to be at the baby appointments even when you really want to be. I wish I could be there at every one and it puts a lot of stress on me when I think about my baby being born when I’m locked up. The good thing is I’ll be out hopefully before my baby’s a month old and possibly be able to be there when it’s born. That would be really amazing. Still, I will have no money to buy my kid what I want to because I’m not on the outs to have a job. Hopefully I can get a job when I am fresh out so I can start to help out.

Entry #628 (deleted)

Entry # 629

As I walked down the road
I have nothing to spare
My thoughts flow through the air
as I reflect on my life
I sit her now and stare
at white walls
with problem unsolved
and I’m still scared
The thought that I might not make it
The real world might bring
me back here
But I have to make it
I’ll get out and be the best me
and nobody will believe
what I’ve done.

Entry # 630
Could Be Positive
I believe in Karma, in what goes around comes around. This could be a positive or a negative thing, which goes hand in hand with the golden rule; treat others how you want to be treated. This I believe.  

Entry # 631
The Choice To Be A Role Model

 I believe in the choice to become a role model. Growing up, I never had a role mode, l but I am the oldest in my family and I am learning to  be an example.  As I sit in my cell and stare at white walls, I think about my life and how hard it was growing up. My life was not set in stone and I was kicked out of home at the age of 9. Little did I know, so did a friend of mine and he became like my little brother. We had to struggle to live, but eventually we found our way: me being sent back to another town and him being locked away. That was the first time I was not a role model when I should have been.
 Now, I sit and think of the future and what lies ahead, but as I do I wonder if I even want to be a role model. Those are the thoughts of a boy and I have become a man, so I push away the past and all of the pain because I’m going to become a father such a short time from now. When my son is born I must do what I can to make sure he doesn't follow the path of his old man, uncles, or cousins.  Some say were a "menace" or a pain, but I realize that the old me is fading and I am a shadow of my past. I choose to be a shining example of the future and of change.

Entry # 632
Nothing But Good

I believe in mind over matter. It’s the way I think that matters in each situation I’m in no matter how big or how small. The day I got locked up was a day of pain, regret, and sorrow. It hurt like hell to be away from my family. I had regrets about the choices I made and felt sorry for myself because I thought of all the time I’d miss out in the real world. I ended up getting 10 months and thought it’s the end of the world. But as time has passed I’ve realized this axiomatic curse was actually a blessing. I sat back in my room last night and thought about all the programs and how healthy I am. I’m going to college and looking at getting a job when I get out. Nothing but good has come out of getting locked up. 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Entry #597
Hands of Fate

The concept of a rewind button is something I have thought about many times since coming here. I would gladly sell my right hand for a chance at the rewind button. If I could go back to that day I would not have left the house. I would've out-danced the cruel grasp of fate. I would have skipped the many AR's & Glocks pointed at me that day. I would of bypassed being choked out by a cop. Most importantly, I would have skipped these last few months leading up to my trial and the many more to come, where I’m going to fight for my life, well actually fight against LIFE. It would have saved my mom countless tears. It would have withheld ammo for my degenerate "father" to scorn her with, not to mention a shitload of money we don't have. That one day I’m going to have to pay back along with the quarter mill I already owe to the hospitals. Damn, if I wouldn’t have left. Instead of sitting here I would be adjusting to my first job I had lined up and finding furniture for my first apartment I had filled out the rental app for.  And I would be out there breaking hearts, promises, and fingernails at my new school. But no, I'm here about to start my trial and my mom's still crying. I've played directly into the hands of fate.

Entry #598
Seven Months and Beautiful

If I had a re-do, or a re-start button I would re-start at the beginning. I would go to school and be a good kid and not get into trouble because, look at me, I'm locked up again! I've been coming here since 2010 and ever since I've been in and out. Now I have a daughter. She's seven months and very beautiful. She looks like both me and her mom and I wish I could re-do the program that I went to a year ago so I could just be with my family instead of being back here in this place. Since I can't change what's already happened, I just have to deal with what I've done. I have my mom, dad, lady, and daughter at home waiting for me and it's not fair to any of them that I'm not there help out. In the end I will be 18 and a better person and father. When I walk out of here my family will be together again.

Entry #599
Wrong Decisions

W-hat I did brought me to Juvenal Hall.
R-eality is where I need to be.
O-utside is the best, better than being inside four cold walls just staring at them.
N-ever say you won’t get caught because eventually you will.
G-ang life isn’t the life I want to live.
D-oing what I do is something I can change.
E-veryday I think of what I’m putting my family thorough.
C-aught up in the moment of failure.
I-‘ve realized sometimes happy moments don’t last forever.
S-taying out can be tough.
I-‘m going to learn from my mistakes.
O-ver thinking my past.
N-ever thought I’d be the way I am.
S-oberiety is what I’m doing until I leave home and until I die.

Entry #600
Lucky Zero
My name is zero because I’m locked up
My name will be dad for I will bear children
My name is son of God for I believe
My name is courage for I won’t give up
My name is happy because I don’t let fools get me down
My name is loyalty for I won’t betray
My name is summer for that is my favorite time of season
My name is funny for I make people laugh
My name is lefty for I write with my left hand
My name is student for I have much to learn
My name is youngster for I know elders
My name is respect for I treat others how I want to be treated
My name is brother for I am a sibling
My name is 17, for that’s my age
My name is bookworm for I read much
My name is lucky for I have such things

Entry #601
Off The Streets

I grew up a violent and apathetic person but as I've grown older I have learned my fists or even my mouth aren’t the solutions to my problems but the enemies to my success. Apathy, it's pulled me down my whole life. Over time I've dug myself a hole in which there is little to no escape. Now I have to dig myself out. I'm ten months deep and I'm slowly inching my way out. It isn’t easy and sometimes I feel like saying giving up, but I always catch myself and keep my eyes on the prize. I don't need praise from anyone because I've learned to be humble and not quit because no one notices what I'm doing. I know my goals and at this point I'm doing my best so when I do get out I will be off the streets. I won't wander around hungry. I won't have to struggle like I have seen my parents do my whole life. I'm going to thrive. I'm about to be 18 and it's time to grow up and choose my path.

Entry #602
This Day Forward

I have learned many things from my mistakes. The biggest thing I have
learned would have to be that wrong choices could land you behind a steel door. Now that I'm 18 those wrong choices could lead me into more trouble and land me in the big house instead of the "Day Care" I'm in now. Although I regret some of the choices I've made I know they have shaped me into the person I am today. Now, my mistakes are in the past and I have paid my dues. Though I still have to pay for them from time to time my life is free to go in any direction I want it to go. From this moment on my life is going to change. I'm going to stop making such bad decisions. Before I leave here, with hope, I'm going to get my GED. When I am released I'm going to get on track and get my life together. So from now on it going to be different.

Entry #603
Roller Coaster High

My addiction has me on a roller coaster. So high that it's impossible to come down. Drugs jam-packing my soul, heartless like the devil told me. These wicked drugs are taking me to hell, oh so lonely. These pits are full of nothing but impurity, surely enough it's going to kill me. No one’s here but these drugs to control me. I'm trying to make this addiction fictitious but in reality, it's so vicious.

Entry #604
My Favorite Mistake

My favorite mistake is getting locked up. Being locked up, I have learned new ways to stay out of trouble. Being locked up has given me more time to think about all my mistakes. It has helped me gain more self-respect. It gives me a reason for being alive. If I hadn’t of been locked up, I would have been getting high and could even be dead. Being locked up has saved my life many times. It is a mistake, but it is also a good thing. I have had more time to talk to my family and also see how much they all missed me while I was on the run. I’ve made many mistakes but, leaving my family was one of the biggest. Getting locked up has devastated my mom. It reminds her of my dad and how he has always been incarcerated. Also I have earned the majority of my high school credits while locked up in juvenile hall. The education program really does try it’s best to educate the majority of us minors. So I do think being locked up is my favorite mistake. My mom would disagree with me, but she always encourages me to do well and to go to school while I’m locked up. Being incarcerated has helped me to become more of a man than I was before I started to notice all my mistakes I’ve made. I’ll never forget this mistake I have made over and over again.

Entry #605
Same Path

Sitting in my cell with so many thoughts running through my mind, some good and some bad. Just wish I didn’t have so much time to think about this stuff. It would be so much better to be out and do what I need to and take care of my family. Here I am locked down all the time wasting my life. My being in here just hurts more and more people I love. My brother is locked up doing 10 years and now I’m locked up again. My family and others I have love for don't need all the stress. They worry about me going down the same path which I don't want to, but it's hard because he and I are so much alike.

Entry #606
A is for Apple

A-lmost always calm.
B-etter than I used to be.
C-almer than I used to be.
D-oing what is asked of me.
E-ngaged in my tasks.
F-ocused on my life.
G-etting better every day.
H-onest most of the time.
I-ntrigued by knowledge.
J-ust as I want to be.
K-nowledgeable about most things.
L-ike most people.
M-y own person.
N-ever worry too much.
O-pen to suggestions.
P-ersistent in most everything I do.
Q-uiet at times.
R-esilient when things get hard.
S-tuck in juvenile hall.
T-rapped in a cell.
U-nderstand most things.
V-ery remorseful about my actions.
W-riting an assignment in F*****’s class.
X-rated is how I used to act.
Y-earning for another chance.
Z-oned in on where I want to go.

Entry #607
A Bigger Box

I have no hope. When they let me out of my cell I'm just in a bigger box and it's getting harder to control my actions. Waking up and knowing today is going to be just like yesterday is stressful. And I've been away from my family so long being in placements and the Hall that I don't really know them anymore and I think they're cool with that. They think I'll ruin the happy family thing they got going on. I want something good to happen to me, but right now, I don’t expect anything to change.

Entry #608

The mistake I made is to put myself in jail. I wish I would have never ended up in this place. My life was going good until I started to wander the streets. If I wasn’t on the streets, I would have been living a perfect life. I should have just listened to my mom when she told me to go to school and stay off the streets. I did not listen to her, did my own thing and ended up in jail. I wish I could just start my life over and would have listened to mom and what she told me the first time. I had a good life before I started causing trouble. I used to be in the streets every day and not go home until 9 or 10 pm. I should have gone home before I got a new charge. Now, I am sitting in cell thinking, why I didn’t just go home that morning and why didn’t I just listen to my mom.

Entry #609

My mistake began when I started stealing cars. I started to steal them every day. I even got locked up for it. That still didn’t help me shaped up, but one day I was in a car crash with my friend and I almost lost my leg. I had to have surgery for it. The day when my doctor told me that I almost lost my leg and the fact that I almost died shaped me up. Now I’m on probation and I have scars on my ankle. I don’t like it. I hate that car crash, however, it helped me change my life. Now I don’t steal cars or even get in one. I try to tell my friends, not to do that because of what happened to me. I don’t want them to go through what I went through. If I stop maybe they will see me not stealing and they might stop stealing too. I stopped stealing cars; I’m a changed person.                                                 

Entry #610
It’s Time For Me To Go

The life that I had growing up was hard because my mom was always twisting the pipe or beating my ass when she did not have the dope to put in the glowi. I rarely lived at home with my mom really because she was always spun out of her mind or losing our house. So one day I just said screw it, it’s time for me to go and that was when I was nine or ten. I went to the streets and found some people that I could relate to and they soon became my family.  I had new brothers, sisters, and I even found someone that I could call mom and dad.  They were the ones that took care of me.  By the time I turned 12 years old, I started gang banging, putting in work, and selling drugs.  These were the only things that I really knew how to do.

Entry #611
On the Run

One mistake I did was going on the run. I was going to school, doing my community service and going to my drug program. I went on the run and started doing drugs again, but I think getting locked up is helping me get my head together. I started going back to school and stopped using. This is why going on the run was my favorite mistake.

Entry #612
Sticks and Stones

My name is Fallen Angel.
I was named Angel because there is good in me,
But I have fallen because I always make mistakes.
My name, Fallen Angel, represents the devil for he was God’s angel who would always do wrong.
I have been known as Fallen Angel for far too long.
I was given this name, because I occasionally sin and I never fail to let the devil in.
But I don’t always sin, I do good.
I do good deeds and also help others who are in need.
I’m just known as God’s Fallen Angel for I have disgraced many of my family members.
The good I do no one seems to remember.
It’s just the bad and that’s why Fallen Angel is the only name I have ever had.
But being called Fallen Angel doesn’t make me mad it just reminds me of what I have done,
And that I will always be God’s fallen son.
My name is Fallen Angel and I am not ashamed, I am the only one who can be blamed.
It’s my fault I’m an Angel who could not be tamed.
So Fallen Angel is what my name shall remain

Entry #613
My Favorite Mistake

My favorite mistake took place in January. I was seventeen years old living with my boyfriend (along with his family). My dream was to be with the love of my life 24/7. What I didn’t realize, is I chose to to stay away from my family. During those few months I lost out on irreplaceable time and memories with each one of my siblings and, most of all, my parents. Regardless, they stayed by my side. I remember the night I called my mom around 2 am because I got arrested. It felt like a dream; never in a million years would I have imagined making that phone call. It has been four and one half months since I have seen my brother and sisters. I get to see my parents twice a week, but it is not enough. I have been selfish and did not realize the unconditional love my family has for me despite my flaws. I can at least say I forgive myself and I have been blessed with a family of my own. This is my favorite mistake.

Entry #614
My real name is locked, key thrown away.
My name will be remembered, even after my day.
My name so high, soaring like a bird
Out of control, rebellious, a gunshot to be heard.
My name will not be shushed, quieted, or ignored.
Constantly climbing reaching for something more.
A punch in the face, a spray of some mace
100 meters, a quick paced race.
My name stings with rage, controlled only by a cage.
Never ashamed, for my name is mine.
Entry #615
Here and Now
My name is not yesterday, nor tomorrow, but it is today. Yesterday is forgotten and tomorrow may never come. The days of the past have been hard but only to be forgotten. The days to come are unknown but only planned on what is wanted. This is why my name is today. Today is what can be done. By doing good today I can change my name for tomorrow. If I went back into my past and lived every day like my last, my life wouldn’t get anywhere fast. My name is not tomorrow, nor yesterday, but is Today.

Entry #616
New Focus

       I’ve made a lot of mistakes in life. My biggest mistake was leaving my grandparents’ house when I was twelve years old. Now I am going to be eighteen. I love my grandparents very much and they love me too. They took care of me since I was a baby.
   It helped me by getting locked up, because I am learning. I learn something new every day. I’ve been through so much. Drugs and alcohol were taking over in my life. Guys would not support me. I would leave and cheat. I was lost in the world.
 I was lost in love, but I couldn’t love someone who didn’t love me. Being locked up helps me stay away from drugs and guys. Those things will not be the focus of my life anymore. I pray that life won’t be a struggle.