A Year in the Life of a Felon, Post-Release

twin towering lessons

shattered, burning

imploding catastrophically

emblazoning indelibly

on consciousness

as those other

twin towers

we all watched fall

the teachings of the


erroneously labeled “justice”


labels do not capture

complexities of past or present

yet barcode futures

for perpetual scanning


of those I walk among

oblivious to my status

I would be last picked

from that hypothetical lineup

“she with a number,

wearing orange

in a shady past”

bearing and demeanor

broadcast professional

confident if reserved

diligent and focused

I fit none of the

jumpsuited stereotypes


in the company of those

privy to my felonious rankness

I am congratulated

on my success

one year post-release

I have two jobs

only one of which

is menial

woefully underpaid

I have an apartment

decent neighborhood

of my choosing

I am told it is inspiring

how I carry myself

in productive

forward motion

diligent and focused

I fit none of the

felon stereotypes


I am practicing walking

upright and courageous

in these post-conviction

shower shoes

where I am forever

a felon

where every open door

to career, housing

or relationships

trembles with

potential slamming

upon revelation

where upstanding citizens

including, but not limited to

former dear friends

justify harsh judgments

founded upon

flawed logic

systemic adjudications

diligent and focused

I refuse to abdicate

my journey forward

I just wish I knew

where I was going






14 thoughts on “A Year in the Life of a Felon, Post-Release

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