the struggle for truth

When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it–always. –Mahatma Gandhi

I write for those women who do not speak, for those who do not have a voice because they were so terrified, because we are taught to respect fear more than ourselves. We’ve been taught that silence would save us, but it won’t. – Audre Lorde

There is struggle in prison. That comes as a surprise to no one. Even when entering, passing through doors that buzz before they open, electricity clicking them wide and then slamming shut them behind us, people passing through and around, head counts, searches, this is an incontrovertible truth, a reality. This is the kind of tension incarcerated women live with every day.

Since its inception, prison was designed to distance an individual from their identity, giving people numbers and uniforms. Even the fruit punch at chow is served without a color. It’s clear. The space, particularly at CRCF, can have the potential to rehabilitate but on what foundation is this built when women are not given the tools to create and maintain their individual identities? What truths can we gather in such a limited space?

That’s where the writing comes in. The page is meditative space where we are made more free no matter what walls surround us, whether we built them or someone else did, whether they need to come down or provide support for a bit longer. Here is where the digging happens and these women are deeply equal to it, aware of truths that come Continue reading