Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters via Unsplash

  1. People in the position to help the most have the power to hurt the most.
  2. To be sorry is not an intermission between disrespectful acts.
  3. If you think perfection is impossible, you’ll be less than you could be.
  4. A Correction Officer’s (CO) direct order has more power than law, policy, or rule.
  5. A couple can be together 15 years in prison and last less than a month on the outside.
  6. What adversely affects the staff will adversely affect the inmates.
  7. Deep waters in some people is nothing but a flash flood. Watch the waters recede.
  8. Impersonal sex is easy. Intimacy is hard.
  9. Some people are mature with pockets of childishness. Others are childish with pockets of maturity.
  10. In prison, no one but yourself will make your needs a priority.
  11. Few inmates lose sleep over their crimes.
  12. Many prisoners choose existence over living because it takes less effort.
  13. Prisoners who thrive in prison have a tendency to stay or come back to prison.
  14. People who push buttons will break one.
  15. Even senseless crimes have reason behind them.
  16. Someone may know your body, but not know you.
  17. Sometimes there are too many hours in a day.
  18. You’re a part of the game, even if you choose not to play.
  19. People believe your labels before they believe you.
  20. Who you know trumps what you know.
  21. Rumors are taken as truth and truths are discounted as rumor.
  22. Quality of life does not depend on how much you buy. It depends on how much you keep.
  23. Loyalty is fragile and love is an illusion.
  24. Even the most notorious can relate to being a no-body.
  25. Easy lessons get learned the hard way.
  26. “Take the threat out before the threat takes you out” — Prisoner’s motto
  27. The cure is often more destructive than the disease.
  28. Among infinite hopelessness lives a grain of hope.
  29. Those who live by the status-quo will treat you according to the status-quo.
  30. De-evolution is real.

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.

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Dorothy Maraglino

Dorothy Maraglino is a writer incarcerated in California. Writing is how she processes the world around her and devotes most of her time to short works that share the realities of prison.