Creative Commons License

Republish our articles for free, online or in print, under a Creative Commons license.

Photo by the United States Army (ID 120216-A-KH311-182)

Sitting here on lockdown,
Because these guys want to act like fools.
They attend all these self help programs,
But never utilize the tools.

They talk a real good one,
On how they want to change,
But then I see them on the yard,
Having a blow for blow exchange.

First it starts as a one on one,
Then escalates to two, then three.
Next thing you know a riot pops off,
I can’t believe what I’m about to see:

Inmates getting stabbed, sliced and jumped
Over a childish and pointless reason.
It’s a sad reality, but it is what it is,
Just another day at Tehachapi’s Four Seasons.

The nurses respond to the aftermath
With gurneys and medical bags.
As the gun tower aims his Mini-14,
Ready to unload his mags.

Inmates sprawled all over the concrete,
Bloodied. Some can’t even move,
All because some “BillyBadAsses”
felt they had something to prove.

They didn’t want to look weak or soft,
So they hid behind a disguise.
It’s sad because unfortunately some of them died.
Didn’t even get to tell their family goodbye.

Drama and violence is inevitable here,
Because violent inmates come by the dozen.
But I’m trying to do good now,
So I can get out and hang with my cousin.

She’s my best friend with a heart of gold,
She takes time to send me nice letters,
Makes me smile and brings joy to my heart,
when I’m feeling under the weather.

She reminds me of Christmastime,
brings me joy, happiness and cheer,
She’s so loving, funny and awesome,
She’s my best time of the year.

So to me none of this prison drama
Is worth getting in trouble for.
I love my cousin with all my heart,
To me she is worth so much more.

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.

Michael Farkas is a writer incarcerated in California.