I’m tired of these prison blues.
And I’m not just referring to my mental state
But this blue uniform that I’ve learned to hate,

A daily reminder of my place in life.
A place where emotions are hidden,
And my dreaming forbidden.

No matter how hard I try not to cry
These blues have me asking myself why:

Why am I not happy?
Why am I so scared?
Will I ever make it home?
F*ck, does anyone even care?

These prison blues
Allow me to fill these shoes.
These shoes that society has expected
Of a bastard Latino,
Hungry for love and neglected.

These blues that cloud up my mind.
Not allowing me so see my purpose
And always keeping me one step behind.

Today I get dressed
One blue pant leg at a time.
Feeling unhappy, blue, and stressed,
Which is my consequence
For committing my crime.
Damn these blues.

Note from the author: Like the common cold, your average prisoner can catch ‘the blues’ at least once a year. The only difference is that some of us have a better “mental immune system” than others, allowing us to bounce back more quickly.

This place can really darken someone’s thoughts if we continue to replay the crimes that led us here. I’ve learned to accept that I am not my crime, just as my entire life isn’t my two-page rap sheet. Through this learning and understanding, blues are far and few.

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.

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

Fabian Garcia

Fabian Garcia is a poet who uses writing to express his feelings and share his story. His first poetry book is expected to be published in January 2022. He is incarcerated in California.