Prison writing class

He got twenty-five years

for killing some guy in a road rage.

The other car cut him off.

So he reached for his gun and fired.


In this class, he has the opportunity.

more than that, the encouragement

to put his feelings down on paper.

So he writes one story about this guy


who owns every lane on every road.

And another where a killer can’t sleep

because his regret, his conscience,

keeps him awake.


And then a third where a punk

is sentenced to half a lifetime in prison,

until creative writing is offered

and he signs up.


He writes in such a rush,

in a bid to bring his life up the moment.

Then he can start on the tale where

this prisoner, so long on the concrete block,


is finally paroled, steps out into

the unfamiliar bright clear air.

He so wants it to have a happy ending.

His instructor’s holding out for one


that satisfies what’s come before.



By John Grey



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