Photo by Trust “Tru” Katsande on Unsplash

My crime defines me
And don’t try convince me that
There’s something good in everybody
Because when you take a closer look
This world is filled with evil people
Even if
You meet some good people once in a while
Happiness can be chosen
Only if you have a release date
It’s not true that happiness is a possible choice
I’m sure you can agree
Is stronger than
Being hopeless
Being hopeful
It’s all a choice
I regret my incarceration
And you’ll never in a million years hear me say that
I’m thankful for my incarceration.

*Now read in reverse 

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. The Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned. The work is lightly edited but has not been otherwise fact-checked.

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Jessie Milo

Jessie Milo is a writer incarcerated in California. He is a volunteer for and an advocate for mental health.