I know what you’re going through

I know because I’ve been there too
I know what it feels like to lay in a bed only to turn in the middle of the night realizing that the reason you awoke 

It is because of the tears which rolled out of your eyes

Against your cheeks 

And down to your chin

Hitting you right on the chest 


Feeling so drenched 
Drenched in pain 

Which no one knows

Yet humble you remain

Falling back to sleep

Dreaming of that nightmare all over again
The sounds of the CO’s 

Banging on your door

It’s time for them to enter And play their roll 

Shaking the unit down 

As we are stripped and search
Stripped from your dignity and pride

No one treats us as humans 

For our stories are never really heard

Because you see 

The system is there to commit you to jail

Guilty until proven innocent is their main aim
Aiming to reach the stars

I wished so many nights

I kept telling myself that everything will be alright 
I will remain a tamed lion for a few more years until the jury and judge awaits to hear my pain as the trial I await seems longer than the usual time frame 
Framed of a crime I’ve never committed 

I sit in silence as I begin to listen

There were so many more 

Just like me

Striving for another opportunity 
Opportunity to do things right and show the judge that I am not that monster who he said I am, refraining from those who were the reason I’ve just become another statistic to the system 
A system in which people truly know nothing of

Unless of course they’ve been inside just like us. 
Us women you see 

Have been granted such a miraculous opportunity 

Some may feel deprived of society 

Others may feel unworthy 

Some bitter

Some free
Free spiritually 

That I am 

I had no choice 

It was the only book I was allowed to read

I found inner strength 

To conquer through the battles and the grief 

To motivate and accept what has been written will be

I’ve learned to love me 

Finding inner peace with my heart for allowing others to control what I gave with ease

I found beauty inside those walls

The sounds of the metal doors clinging as the CO’s scream out for me by my last name

Sometimes I am a number which forever remains

Like a social security card 

Where it follows you for life

I found joy to hear my name being called 

I brought 

Myself to stronger courage 

Releasing my pain 

While transitioning into something greater 

For us all 

By Devi Ramsaran 

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