National Poetry Month: A Poem for Truth, A Poem for Survival

04.27.18 By Emma Zack

National Poetry Month: A Poem for Truth, A Poem for Survival

To help us celebrate National Poetry Month, the Innocence Blog asked readers to share with us their poetry about justice. The response has been overwhelming. Thank you to all of you who have submitted your inspirational work.

As the literary month comes to an end, today we are posting our final two poems of the series, both of which were authored by Innocence Blog readers. The first poem is titled The Whole Truth and was written by Daphne Brulee. The second poem is titled My Prison Memoirs and was written by Sylvia Frates about her father. Thank you, Daphne and Sylvia, for sharing your beautiful poems with us.

The Whole Truth

One day my dad was
making my mom a sandwich
The next, he was arrested
for a crime he didn’t commit

Rather than teaching
my little sister to ride a bike
He sits in a cell, awaiting trial
Unheard, unseen, invisible

We hope — and wait
Will we ever wake up
and make pancakes together
like we used to?

– Daphne Brulee

My Prison Memoirs

No rehabilitation or enough psychotherapy in prison.
There’s only isolation and survival mode 24/7.

Even the innocent are thrown in because society believes an accusation caries some type of truth.
And prison is prison with a culture of its own.
Survival is key, it’s their only goal.
Even the tough need to learn to survive, can you imagine the weak?
We can. We took a hit.
We’re ground zero and we’re still in disbelief.
Love ripped away and our life on hold.
No love from officials inside.
I was once told, “They only come out in body bags.”
It’s not humane anymore through my eyes.
It’s just not right.

– Sylvia Frates


Related: A Poem of Promise, A Poem of Despair

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