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Missing 20 Christmases inside
the mutual connection to my family

Is untied

All I recall is back when I was a kid
the times I couldn’t wait for December 25th
not all about the presents below the tree
my real excitement was
witnessing our family unity
feeling nothing but joy and love in the air.
without noticing any drama that was there

Now I’m missing 20 Christmases inside
waiting on the day my freedom will arrive
Sending joyous cards and letters to my folks
But the best gift I could give them
right now is hope …
Wishing I could unwrap
the clouds, the moon and the snow
To make their Xmas
the best one they’ve ever known

So I’m missing 20 Christmases today
But the love I have
for my family
will never go away.

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.

Cornell Shawell is an African American writer incarcerated in Pennsylvania. He is an aspiring writer of poetry and children’s novels.