Kylie Batlin was the California Poetry Out Loud 2009 Monterey County champion and California state runner-up.
Watch Kylie perform Ma Rainey by Sterling A. Brown in the Senate Chamber at the state finals!
“No Human Way to Kill” has been described as somewhere between an art book and a human rights statement. Highly acclaimed artist, Robert Priseman has put together a collection of interviews with former Texas Warden Jim Willett who oversaw 89 executions, along with an essay about life on death row in San Quentin by former Crips gang member Anthony Ross, and an essay from Cathy Harrington whose daughter was murdered; Cathy negotiated a life sentence for her daughter’s murderer when he had been facing a potential death sentence. The book also includes 12 etchings by Priseman.
Priseman’s on-line gallery can be seen here on the Amnesty International website.
No Human Way to Kill is for sale on Amazon.
Since his 2005 trial and release after 44 years in prison, former Angolite editor and award-winning journalist Wilbert Rideau has continued to devote himself to educating people about the realities of the world behind bars.
His autobiography, In the Place of Justice: A Story of Punishment and Deliverance is more than a tale of transformation and triumph, it is also the story of how the Louisiana State Penitentiary changed from the bloodiest prison in America to one of the safest. His vantage point as editor of the nation’s only uncensored prisoner-produced publication for 25 years lends the book unique insight and dispels many popular misconceptions about both the keepers and the kept.
In the Place of Justice: A Story of Punishment and Deliverance is for sale on Amazon.
Authors Stephen C. Richards and Jeffrey Ian Ross help readers prepare for life outside bars.
Heres the product details from Amazon:
The United States has the largest criminal justice system in the world, with currently over 7 million adults and juveniles in jail, prison, or community custody. Because they spend enough time in prison to disrupt their connections to their families and their communities, they are not prepared for the difficult and often life-threatening process of reentry. As a result, the percentage of these people who return to a life of crime and additional prison time escalates each year. Beyond Bars is the most current, practical, and comprehensive guide for ex-convicts and their families about managing a successful reentry into the community and includes:
*Tips on how to prepare for release while still in Prison
*Ways to deal with family members, especially spouses and children
*Finding a job
*Money issues such as budgets, bank accounts, taxes, and debt
*Avoiding drugs and other illicit activities
*Free resources to rely on for support”
Hop on over to Amazon for more info.
Beyond Prisons: A New Interfaith Paradigm for Our Failed Prison System explores the history of the American penal system and presents a moral and ethical criticism of the state of the current prison system.
Beyond Prisons: A New Interfaith Paradigm for Our Failed Prison System is available for purchase on Amazon.
David Dow’s new book The Autobiography of an Execution chronicles his own life as a defense lawyer for inmates on death row.“I do not want my clients to be killed, and I can’t stand them,” he writes.
Read more about the book here.
The Forgotten Victim
© Alison Henderson
‘That’s her there! her hubby’s inside!’
‘How can she stand by him?’ a neighbor cried!
‘I’d throw away the lock and key!’
‘That husband of hers should never be free!’
‘That woman can do so much better than him!’
‘I’d throw all his letters away in the bin!’
‘Just what can he offer now he’s locked away?’
‘A complete waste of space!’ she shouted that day.
‘That’s the one there! her boyfriend’s inside!
‘He’s scum of the earth!’ a neighbors implied!
‘If I was her, well I’d meet someone else!
‘Not wasting my life to be left on the shelf!
‘That woman’s been left to cope with the shame’
‘It was all over the papers! and gave out his name’
‘He’s useless! A criminal! Bring back the rope!’
‘He’ll do it again! for him there’s no hope!’
That man you condemn has a child and a wife
A Mum and a Dad who has given him life!
What would you do if this happened to yours?
Deny all your love and close all the doors?
Do you honestly think I’d sink to a level
And just turn my back and deem him a devil?
Yes! He’s done wrong and is serving his time
And No! I do not agree with his crime.
‘That woman’ you point at, yes it is me
I was born with a name, as I’m human you see!
I’m innocent! just incase you’ve forgot
And love him whether you like it or not!
I’ve had the abuse, the comments and more
It’s nothing I haven’t heard all before
I mean no offense when I say this to you
I’m a victim as well- A forgotten one too.
Read more prison poetry here.
As with many kids, my son (now age 17) got mixed up with a bad bunch. He was caught in possession of drugs, never squealed on the other kids so he was the only one punished and was sent to a Youth Camp for 9 months. He came home, mixed with them again and committed a more serious crime… with them. This time he has been sent to a prison for 3 3/4 years.
Too Young For Bars…
© Ken Budden
Not a day goes by I don’t think of you Son,
Locked up like an animal and still so young.
It doesn’t seem right, it doesn’t seem fair.
The sentence they gave you by putting you there.
But the crime has been done…you rejected advice,
And young as you are, you must now pay the price.
It breaks my heart knowing what you now face,
And I pray your return from that forbidding place.
The root of the problem was the company you kept,
Being out of a night-time while the rest of us slept.
You were easy to talk to, you fell in their trap,
And they stayed at home while you took the rap.
You were given a chance, to a Youth camp you went,
I was hoping that that was a ‘lesson well spent’.
But when you came home, you met with them again,
Now look at the trouble you’ve got yourself in.
I remember your young days, teaching you right from wrong,
Telling you never be weak, and always be strong.
Your manners were perfect, they said so at school,
The girls all adored you and thought you were cool.
But it’s never too late, I know this time you’ve learned,
Like the proverbial ‘new leaf’, it is you who has turned.
A new life awaits you, there are people who care,
Who love you and need you and will always be there.
Love, Dad xxx
Read more prison poetry here.
Elaine Leeder’s book Inside and Out: Women, Prison, and Therapy takes a look at the growing problem of female incarceration. Leeder’s uses her feminist perspective to dispel stereotypes about women offenders. The book also includes an in-depth analysis of how violence has affected women and led to increased criminality.
Inside and Out: Women, Prison, and Therapy can be purchased on Amazon.com.
The author is trying to convey that within the walls of prison, there is plenty of time to think of how things could have been different.
Thinking About Mother
© Terrie L. Sherman
Within these walls this prison
My mind and thoughts run free.
I think of mom and days gone by
And of what she meant to me.
I wonder how life would have been
Had she not gone away
And would I be behind these bars
If she were here today
How would my life be different?
I’ve asked a million times
If I could only talk to her
She might have stopped my crimes.
I’m thankful for the time we had
But she could not have known
Of the dark void left within my life
In the years since she’s been gone.
I needed her and miss her.
I love her for a fact
But I know my life is different
And I know I can’t turn back.
Read more prison poetry here.
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