Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Lou Reed March 2, 1942 – October 27, 2013

The first time I remember hearing Lou Reed, I was a resident at the Chestnut Lodge School for Bad Little Bastards and Bastardettes. This would have been 1989/90. At this point I barely listened to anything that was outside of the hardcore/thrash zone...I was a snarky, know it all little shit and I had no tolerance for anything outside of my very small, insulated & isolated world.

I was taking a ride with a staff member, Dale, when he put in a Velvet Underground mixtape. Here I am, listening to this man spew forth poetry set to music...spilling pathos through the speakers. I was an outspoken youth...I remember Dale looking over at me and smiling. He said something to the effect of "This is real rebel music...for when you grow out of your punk faze." I am hearing heroin addiction, guns, transvestites. I am hearing the most beautiful telling of the most horrid tales. Sometime in the next week Dale brought me a copy of the Lou Reed/VU mixtape...and a lifelong appreciation and kinship for and with his music.

I never outgrew my "punk faze"...but I did make room for Lou Reed and his cracked sidewalk anthems in my repertoire. Lou Reed opened my world to Jim Carroll, Patti Smith and Tom Waits. He became my soundtrack...when my first daughter was conceived, it was The Beginning of a Great Adventure, when I was consuming ungodly amounts of coffee on the ghetto streets of Cleveland and writing my ass off I was taking a Walk on the Wild Side, when my youngest daughter was born Sweet Jane was on heavy rotation...and of course when I was shooting poison into my veins, Heroin played on as a testament to those who had built the junkie fraternity and survived.

Lou Reed's music will always be dear to me because Lou Reed was a real person. Lou Reed wrote with such naked honesty that sometimes I felt as if I was listening to someone's diary set to music...something that was not meant to be heard. Lou Reed bared his soul to the world. He was one of the last great outlaw american poets of his generation.

I am not saddened by his death. The man truly lived for his short 71 years...if anything I am glad for him. He deserves to rest well. Thank you for the music, Lou. Your rhythm will be missed. 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

"How you doing with this, dude?"

I don't even know what to say right now, I just know that I need to write or I will lose this moment. I am not in the best place ever, not processing these recent deaths with any ease. Brad passing is the 4th death of a close friend in one year. Beginning with Carl o.d.ing, Jimmy being beaten to death, Frito being shot by Miami PD, and now Brad. Death is mundane; as common as being born or breathing. This fact does not make death any easier. 

Mourning death is a selfish thing. I know this. Those departed are free from this world, from it's inherent unsatisfactory nature. Free from the state of affairs which the Vaisnavas so aptly call The Iron Age of Quarrel and Hypocrisy. The departed are gone one way or another from this world; whether you are an atheist or a devout believer-the pain of life is ended. So we mourn because we selfishly want our friend back, we mourn because we didn't get to say something to our departed that we feel we should have said. There was still some adventure to be had with our passed friend or loved one. 

I mentioned a few days ago that I am glad to go through this poison free...I want to feel this pain, every second of it. I am willing to embrace this loss without the luxury of numbness. I think that this is part of life. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013


I call myself unbreakable and I think I deserve to...like in Psalms 69, my enemies number like the hairs on my head. I have survived everything that the world can throw and I am still walking around with my head up. My own personal mantra is the poem Invictus...and it's very meaning can be summed by just one of it's lines: My head is bloody, but unbowed"

I want to use this opportunity to say that surviving, being unbreakable isn't simply a matter of being hard. There is a point, yes, that you must be strong through life...but that's like saying that you must breathe oxygen in life, of course you do. Being unbroken by circumstance means retaining who you are at your core through out it all. At my core being, though I am aloof by nature, I am kind. I am optimistic. I am generous.

To me, if I would allow the events of my life to harden me unreasonably I wouldn't consider myself unbreakable. I am able to have survived what I did without being much different in demeanor than I was before these events. I don't know how...if I did I would freely give away the answer. Like some people like to say..."someone always said what you are trying to say, and they said it better" So here is a quote from Mother Theresa :

Do It Anyway - popularized by Mother Teresa
"People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered; forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies; succeed anyway.
If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you; be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight; build anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, others may be jealous; be happy anyway.
The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow; do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough; give the world the best you've got anyway.
You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and God; It was never between you and them anyway."

Do you regardless of what life throws at you . Be truly unbreakable.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Light & Water

Strange Grey. Retreat. Biscuit. These are the colors that Butler County Prison used to paint and detail it's insides with. Imagine bright florescent lights bouncing off of off white walls all day, 24 hours a day. This is part of the physicality of jail life in Butler County.

I want to talk today about just that, the physical side of jail...I have spent time already covering the very personal side of my own struggles at the jail, my biased opinions and my side of the experience. There is another side to incarceration that cannot be biased, it simply is.

Before going further, I am not someone who is under the illusion that jails should be exactly comfortable...there is discomfort in the so-called free world, and of course the comfort level in jail would be less than that. Naturally, jail will be bare bones necessity.

There are two points that I really want to cover now; the first being light, the second being water.

Light. In Butler County Prison, you are subject to florescent lights 24/7. I am not an optometrist, but I have to think that this is not good for one's eyes. There is a little respite at night when the staff generously turns one of the two lights in your cell off...but after a few minutes, you don't notice. You could comfortable read a book all night in the lighting. The jail actually sites the reasoning behind this is that it makes it easier for guards to count captives at night...as opposed to using their flashlights to look in. First...no one is going anywhere after lock in, counting is arbitrary. Second, if an individual considers using a flash light as hard work, maybe that individual shouldn't work in the corrections industry. Just opinion here...what do I know? In contrast, captives are provided little or no real opportunity to see real sunlight...the rec yard gets a thin ray of light for a short time during the day, and the windows in the cells are frosted to "prevent inmates from signalling free persons". Again, excuse me if my opinion is showing but what kinda chittlins is that? Signalling them for what exactly? An armed escape? A revolt? Laughable.

Water. The keystone of our life. Water in jail is not what most people would consider "drinkin' water". This over chlorinated, recycled water literally tastes like pool water.

Sometimes less is more. I am going to omit needless words and leave it at that. Chlorinated/recycled. Very little sunlight, if any.

Dream Oct 15th 2013

I am in jail, in some kind of holding area. Ronnie Hicks is there and he has been stabbed...it's not serious, light laceration. He is on a gurney and we are joking about how arbitrary jail rules are. At this point, on cue, a guard comes over and tells me that I have to leave because me talking to Ronnie when the ambulance comes is a security risk. We argue the point for a minute before I realize that the guard is just a little ant mindlessly going about this ant business. You cannot argue with these people in or out of dreams...it's futile. Followers will do anything to avoid thinking.

So I leave. Art Marx is there, standing by a door that leads to the outside...an enclosed walkway. I tell him that I can't stay any longer; if I do I'll completely lose my mind. He says he understands and will file the necessary papers when I leave...

I go through the walkway and end up in Kittanning. It looks like the 1940's I think, though I have no way of knowing what the 40's looked like. At any rate I am walking down by the river, there are a couple of old guys singing Vera by Pink Floyd. I sit there thinking about how depressing Pennsylvania is.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

dream Oct 14 2013

I had a dream I was rock climbing in the Grand Canyon with John Joseph and Charles Bukowski. Civilization was crumbled, but that wasn't a part of the dream...just implied. Of course Bukowski was complaining the whole time. We camped in these cocoon-like single person tents that hung from our repelling gear.

We watched fire works and people far below canoeing  as we went to sleep.

When I woke up I had a cup of coffee and listened to Malfunction. 

haiku 10

ghost symphonies play
while trees in the forest fall
the forest remains

Life Oct 14 2013

I have been out one month. Things are going slow and I really can't complain about anything...I would have liked to have located employment by now, other than that things are good. I am doing my thing; writing, reading, listening to old blues and drinking strong coffee.

I don't know how all this is going to turn out...who does? There are good things happening slowly, repairing old friendships, forging new ones.

I have no desire to fight this world anymore. No, there's been no change of heart, it's simply futile...the world is as it is and I cannot allow myself to be joyous or pained about it. It's in flux, ever changing as it always has been and always will be. All I can do is go on about my business, do what I feel is right and live.


Saturday, October 12, 2013

The prison articles that started all this...

Since I mentioned previously that the entries on my old http://chaos1976.blogspot.com/ had spurred some dialogue between myself and the prison staff, I thought I should throw some links up here and share the original posts:

American Hardcore, banned in BCP


Prison Rant


Scandal @ BCP


Absolute Power Corrupts, Absolutely


some vintage shit...enjoy!!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Serenity and Forgiveness

It has been 18 months since my last drug/drink/high. Things are not perfect by any stretch, but I feel good. I have had temptation but am still able to say that poison is not a part of my life today.

Last night the topics at the meeting included Serenity, Forgiveness and Patience.

Patience is something I know well...we have a solid relationship. You cannot do time in jail without learning to respect time, respecting time is the foundation of my patience. Living in a building controlled by people as lost and clueless as the people they hold captive teaches patience by mountains.

For me forgiveness and serenity go hand in hand. How can I know serenity without forgiveness? I cannot afford to hold resentment, I have no choice but to forgive. I held resentments against the legal system at large, police, corrections, district attorneys, parole & probation, etc, ad nauseam for too many years. Now, to say that I have respect for an inherently corrupt system would be a stretch...however; the people upholding that system are simply people after all. They go about their ant business in the ant-hill; unquestioning...and probably truly believing that they are doing the right thing. I cannot fault them for that. The fact of the matter is this, we are all connected. I cannot wish harm on people without also harming myself. I forgive these people for my own interest primarily...and for theirs secondarily. And not just them. I forgive everyone who I ever perceived to have done me wrong. I truly wish wellness, happiness and peace to everyone.

This is the only path to serenity that I know.

Serenity is not blind and sublime bliss. Serenity is peace of mind. Serenity can be known in chaos. Serenity is subjective, it is your own and only you can define it for yourself. My own serenity is manifest in how I interact with and view my world. I am now intimate with serenity in a way I have never before been. I have spent a great deal of my life focused on hate...I know both ends of this. And I have to say that serenity is a better companion by far. I have my coffee & tobacco, I meditate, I go to meetings, I am a member of my family; a friend to my friends, I listen to the blues and I write. My existence is peaceful. I know serenity. 

Monday, October 7, 2013


People who have been to jail have a tendency to let the experience either harden their hearts or beat them into submission. I have never allowed it to do either. Some days I would be jaded, of course. Some days I'd wonder what the point was in making an effort to change...But these extremes would pass, as all extremes do. 

I am endeared to the poem Invictus (Latin for unconquered) but William Ernest Henley. It is four short and powerful stanzas about remaining undefeated by circumstance. 

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul.

Mr. Henley captures that rare and indestructible quality of the individual at odds with the world. The opportunity to "give up" is ever present...and it would probably make one's life easier. To borrow from a much bigger picture: Is safety worth freedom? That is to say, is it worth it for one to give up one's struggle for acceptance into the herd? Not this guy. 

I said all that to say this: I have not allowed myself to become either beaten or embittered by the system. I have not forsaken my humanity. I am not without feeling or depth or hope. 

Here I stand, on my patch of Route 422. Many years and memories leading up to this. I stand firm, I am still I. I feel love and I feel motivation. I feel righteous contempt and I feel a desire to question everything. I am what I always have always had the potential to be. 

I am unconquered.  

Some Guys Have All The Luck

In the fall of 2011 I was doing a short sentence for not reporting to probation. 

My homie Nick was my cellmate. 

One day after lock down Nick looked down from his top bunk and said to me "Hey man, you know what song is going through my head?"

I replied in the negative. 

He then said "Rod Stewart's Some Guys Have All the Luck."

I don't expect anyone to understand, but it was the funniest thing I had heard that year. 

Re-Entry Part II

I feel the need to say, again, that the Re-Entry Program is a work in progress. It is not the same now as when I was in it and I hope that it continues to grow. I hope that it actually benefits the people in jail and people in the community, as it has potential to do. There are benefits to being in the program. Applying for and receiving a copy of your Social Security card, birth certificate and state i.d. are requirements. There is an emphasis on adult education and living a drug free life. Some semblance of spiritual life is covered...though it is spiritual life as approved of by the administration.

Here are a few observations, none of this should be read as endorsement or critique. It is simple what I saw and my thoughts on that.

I think that spirituality is necessary to growth. It is a good thing to be in touch with something bigger than yourself. Spirituality can shrink the world...make you see that we are all connected. If people see themselves as connected to the world at large it is unlikely that they will participate in activity that hurts the community around them. In my life I draw little distinction between religions...you can find wisdom and truth wherever you look.

Here's where I had a problem with the Re-Entry Program's treatment of spirituality:

It was compulsory and it was exclusively Christian.

Along spiritual lines Re-Entry had 3 groups when I was a participant; Internal Mentoring(a group done in the jail), External Mentoring(a group done at a local church annex), and God's Country(again at the church annex). The people who hosted these groups are not employed by the jail, they are volunteers. Our hosts we're extremely gracious...As an example for the outside groups, there was food. Upon finding out that I am a vegetarian, our hosts provided me with vegetarian dishes, which was always very tasty fare by the way. It is my humble opinion that the people from the church who host these programs are very nice people who are genuinely concerned about their community, and the people in it...including those with legal issues. These people were not judgmental, and even upon learning that I am Buddhist did not in any way try to Bible thump me. They were all lovely people, and I mean that.

I do have to say that, as someone who believes that one's spirituality is one's own business, I have a problem with the jail enforcing activity in any single religion exclusively. Can you, my dear and loyal readers, imagine if prisoners were forced to participate in Islamic services? What  if learning Buddha's Dhamma or chanting Hare Krishna were compulsory activities in a jail? It is my belief that people benefit from any spiritual study but that is beside the point...A jail should not, I doubt that it legally can, force participation the way it does.

I want to re-state that my issue is not with the volunteers. They were great people and refreshingly Christlike, they were compassionate and strong in their faith. It was truly an honor to have met and exchanged ideas with them.

My issue is with forced religious activity. I am not sitting here with my hand in an apple pie, waving a flag but it doesn't seem "American" to me...

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Maddog, meet Butler County Prison. Butler County Prison, meet Maddog.

I was first booked into Butler County Prison in 2001, a little over a year after I moved there from Cleveland. I was arrested for a minor assault beef that was dropped and not worth talking about. 

I don't remember the booking process other than I had a lot of facial piercings and the guards were amused by this. 

Once I was checked in, complete with a set of "blues"-the blue uniforms we had before the stripes, I was sent to D Range. To get to D Range which was top tier, you had to walk passed B Range. These were old style ranges...like how you see in old prison films. You know the kind, a line of cells, a lot of bars and a common area stretching along the cells. 

Well as I was passing B-Range, I saw a midget that looked like Bushwick Bill playing cards with an Elvis impersonator. 

From the ghettos of Cleveland to this. I thought it was some sort of set up...I wasn't in jail, this was Candid Camera. 

It got better. I over heard a guard later in the day say "I don't care if she has a dick or not...if she spits on me, I'm beating her like she was still a man" That's a paraphrase...I don't know what he said exactly. He was of course referring to a (now) woman who had given herself a sex change operation to become a woman. Yes. Someone gave himself a home sex change operation. I couldn't make this up. 

This was my first day in Butler County Prison. This was my introduction to an institution that would loom over my relationship with Butler County for the next 12 years. 

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Re-Entry Part I

Like many county jails, Butler County Prison has recently instituted a "Re-Entry Program" supposedly to curb recidivism. It is called a voluntary program...maybe my definition of voluntary is off, but it is a program that inmates are forced into and kept in by threat of administrative discipline(the hole) if one does not participate after being selected to partake. 

To be fair, the program was in it's infant stage when I was a "participant". Things have changed and I do think that it is a good idea, on paper at least. Anything that can stop the revolving door is something that I can get behind. I do have to question the fact that prison admins actually want to stop recidivism. That's like corporate McDonalds starting a campaign to eliminate french fries, soda and Big Macs. 

Of course I do not agree that a guard/counselor runs the program. To digress for a second: Guards have their own culture, they see a very real line between "them" and "us". If a guard is too compassionate or understanding toward prisoners, they are perceived as weak by their peers. Point being that any guard in the position of Re-Entry Coordinator is a guard first and foremost. This is not an indictment on the person of the current Coordinator, it would be the same no matter who was in that position. My opinion is that if any progress is to be made, the prisoner must be able to trust the Coordinator...in the present this is next to impossible.

Moving on. 

The Re-Entry Program in BCP is a 4 stage program, participating in various classes and  meeting certain criteria before moving up in levels. The following was the weekly itinerary when I was in the program:

Sun:      10:00 am to 11:00 am external AA meeting (levels 3 & 4, optional)  

Mon:     8:30 am-9:30 am Physical Exercise 
              12:00 pm-1:00 pm Criminal Thinking(1st Group) 
              3:00 pm-4:00 pm SOAR(staring over after a record)
              6:00 pm-8:00 pm Drug & Alcohol(work release/comm. service guys) 

Tues:      9:00 am -11:00 am Drug & Alcohol(re-entry)
              12:30 pm-1:30 pm Physical Exercise
              2:00 pm Sex, Drugs and Risky Behavior(monthly)
              3:00 pm-4:00 pm Financial Literacy(levels 1-4)
              6:30 pm-7:30 pm AA 

Wed:     8:30 am-9:30 am Physical Exercise
             12:00 pm-1:00 pm Thinking for a Change(levels  1-4)
             1:00 pm-2:00 pm Nutrition(levels 1-4)
             2:00 pm-3:00 pm VOICE(levels 1-4)
             3:00 pm-4:00 pm Life Skills(levels 1-4)
             6:00 pm-8:00 pm External Mentoring(levels 3 & 4)

Thurs:    9:00 am-10:00 am Drug & Alcohol(re-entry)
             12:30 pm-1:30 pm Physical Exercise 
             2:00 pm-3:00 pm Criminal Thinking(2nd Group)
             5:30 pm-6:30 pm Internal Mentoring(levels 1-4)
             6:30 pm-7:30 pm AA(levels 1-4)

Fri:        8:30 am-9:30 am Physical Exercise 
             12:00 pm-1:00 pm Thinking for a Change(level 1-4)

Sat:       7:00 pm-8:00 pm God's Country @ 1st United Methodist Church

**Friday, Saturday and Sunday were also dedicated to kitchen work for those on level 2. These days would begin by waking up at 5:30 am and working in the kitchen for 12 hours averagely. Kitchen work in Re-Entry is not compensated, and you log in almost an entire work week in 3 days.  

Next up, program Overview. 

Friday, October 4, 2013

October 4th 2013

Just a few thoughts:

I have been out of jail for about 3 weeks now and I am still adjusting. Not to mention the fact that I haven't spent any significant time here in New Castle since the late 90's. Everything is as different as can be. This is a good thing. New Castle itself is in some sort of rebirth. This little Rustbelt city that I have equally sought for comfort from and been at war with all my life seems to be making a turn for the good. Since I have decided to dig in here, I am glad that things have changed...of course the Lower East is a war zone, there is still an air of corruption but tell me where these things do not exist.

I am embarking on a new project today. Self-publishing. A few friends of mine have published on Lulu and it sounds like an option. The first project there is to pour back over my journals from jail, sift my memories, and interview a few people that I did time with...putting together a more cohesive account of the Butler County experience. 

There has been a story sauntering through my mind...about a magician in modern times. I am headed to the library shortly to do some research, and try to see the direction of the tale. 

The universe conspires with me, as it does with all creative people who realize their calling. 

I wish wellness, happiness, and peace to everyone who reads this.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Back in the World

It's been about two weeks since my release from jail. This blog has helped to keep me busy...it is a work in progress; I will continue to keep regular entries. 

This is not a full documentary of my jail experience. I omitted some entries because jail life is repetitive. Guys often make "Groundhog Day" references, it sometimes does seem like the same day played over and over again. 

I had my struggles. I am not racist or sexist, I am a free thinker...this made it hard to have conversations. I am also of the mind and the opinion that questioning arbitrary authority is the duty of any freethinker. 

I did meet a few people of note, ran into some old friends. I learned about myself, and hopefully how to alter some of my faulty mental patterns. I had correspondence with Sivali, who taught me about the Buddha's teachings. 

As mentioned waaaaay back, I was confronted by a jail employee about some things I said on my last blog chaos1976.blogspot.com. I welcome and invite any and all correctional staff in general and specifically those employed in Butler County to read and comment any of these submissions. I do not object to people speaking their mind...I don't believe in censorship, and I will not delete comments. 

In the Nahuatl language(the indigenous language of Mexica)the word Tiahui means "always moving forward". That is what it is time for me to do. I have exorcised demons here and I will leave them here. I don't want my work to be focused on anger or resentment. I do not want my writing to be defined by angst. There is enough suffering in the world...I am not trying to create more.

End Transmission

Release Date (a nod to Xzibit)

Its been 17 months, 1 week and 6 hot  ones
One more wake up & I'm a free man walking
Leaving behind these walls that bind
Thank God on High I didn't lose my mind
I got pain & meditation, prayer and medication
Feeling like Bill Murray in Lost in Translation
Cuz I've gone months without a mind on my level
In a room full of sheep & I'm the only rebel
So when I hit the street, all this is behind me
Another jail cell is the last place you'll find me
No more card games, bad trays-that bullshit can miss me
Every crack smoking hater on block, they can all miss me
I been through too much to fall down again
My life means too much, it's too strong for them to bend
Tomorrow after breakfast-I got a full plate
Friday the 13th, that's my release date.

End Transmission

Judith 16:12

The sons of slave girls pierced them through;
the supposed sons of rebel mothers cut them down;
they perished before the ranks of the Lord.


Johnny Cash died 10 years ago today. He is the Patron Saint of Outlaws, Outcasts and Outsiders. I cannot put into words what his music means to me. I will just say this: Thank you John, sleep well.

Remember II

I need to remember not only how wretched incarceration is, but how good it feels to be clean. It has been years since I was dope sick...remember how crushing that is.


Ajax came with my probation card, said I'll be out by Friday. Goodbye BCP.

9-11-01 to 9-11-13

I remember not being confused. I wasn't exactly surprised...I'd seen too much to be surprised, but I remember wondering what people hoped to accomplish by attacking the most dominant military country in the world. I remember thinking that it would have made more sense to attack a less civilian target(I wasn't aware of the Pentagon being hit yet).

I watched the news with unattached interest. Muslim Jihadists? Ok, sure I'll play along.

9-10-01 No one gave a shit about their country and Dubya was an unremarkable new president.

9-11-01 Everyone was plastering US flags on everything and Geo. W Bush was THE best thing since The Gipper.

Here's to instant Patriotism, loss of freedom in the name of "safety", and fanaticism. 

Loves Gonna Getcha

Do you equate sex with love? Of course you do. I don't. Sex can arise from love but it more often arises from a chemical reaction and pure animal instinct. Love never arises from sex, and vice versa. 

I have intimacy with people that sex with isn't anywhere near viable. 

Conversely I've had sex with people who I wouldn't want to know intimately. 

Flingin' Coleslaw

At dinner Matt S. flung coleslaw and hit a dude in the face. I rewarded him with yogurt. Damn it feels good to be a gangsta. 


In jail 17 months exactly. Paroled a week ago. Still waiting on Ajax and my parole plan.


haiku 9

rust will eat regimes
armies cannot defeat time
the sun will shine on

haiku 8

in time chains will rot
weapons become obsolete
a song will live on

JAIL 8-31-13

17 months. There are things I need to remember. 

My bed is a slab of metal that is attached to the wall. 

My food is mostly over processed garbage. If I wasn't a vegetarian it would be way worse. I need to remember that their meat comes frozen in unlined cardboard boxes. No plastic, no wrap...frozen meat in a box.

I need to remember sitting on my insoles when I shit so that I don't freeze my ass off on the steel toilet.

Remember my outgoing mail NOT being sealed in front of me, my incoming and outgoing mail read and censored.

My meager possessions are subject to the scrutiny of guards. 

Remember mechanical masturbation. Little or no pleasure, outlet for tension and a brief biochemical reaction.

I need to remember the clicking of magnetic locks, the din of constant idiot noise.

I have worn elastic waist canvas pajamas fro the past 17 months.

Book cases full of mindless waste of paper, bullshit novels and lame Triple Crown hood books.

Remember idiocy being the norm, remember having to dumb down my speech. 

Remember how most people can't stand a second of introspection, hence the constant jabber.

This is not my life. This is not my home. This is not for me anymore.

Paroled 8-30-13

Friday. Day began like any other, after breakfast I made a strong cup of coffee and settled in to watch the news. I was probably spacing out when C/O M-----X said "Mattocks, be ready for court at 9" 

I was completely unaware that I had court. I knew that Joe had filed my motion, but didn't know that a date had been set for a hearing. I didn't expect a hearing until mid September. 

The Universe conspired with me today. It was unreal. I saw H--X and Mc-------X from the sheriff's dept on my way out of the jail. B-X S----X was my DA, G--X E----X was there representing probation...these are all people I have a good rapport with. Like in The War of Art or The Alchemist...St Jude heard my prayer and worked his mojo.

So now I wait for Ajax to come do a parole plan and I'm out the gate. Still kind of in shock.  


What though the field be lost?
All is not lost; the unconquerable will, 
And study of revenge, immortal hate, 
A courage never to submit or yield...
-Satan in Milton's Paradise Lost


Mail from Taylor. Surprised to get this...I am stoked to actually be in her life even if it is 1/2 way at this point. We have much catching up to do. Nothing I can do about the past but I can be here for her now. 

Her letter is dated 8/21 and includes a happy birthday, my first birthday wish. Thanx chica!

8-25-13 Dream

I am a member of some tactical assassination squad. We infiltrate a warehouse that is divided into living areas...we're there to eliminate wack emcees. For real. This is what I dream of. All the Cristal poppin, blood diamond wearing suck ass commercial frauds in a pool of blood. Amen.

Tattoos & Scars

He looks into a mirror for the millionth time in his life. It is a mirror in a jail cell, these mirrors are made of polished stainless steel. They warp when people punch them. His mirror is warped. He contributed to this.

Looking at his reflection he sees tattoos and scars. 

A thin scar on the bridge on his nose, left by a fist when he was in his early 20's. There are other scars; from when he was stabbed, some from unremembered events. Scars from putting injecting heroin into the same vein too many times. 

Tattoos reflect his life. Loves, pains, birth and death. 

There are scars and tattoos that he sees that no one else can decipher. His father's Aztec eyes, his mother's expressions. His own observant flat affect. 

Three decades stare back at him. He feels hope despite his current surroundings. There is work to be done and little time to rest.


Dream 8-16-13

I am in Washington Park with Adam Yauch. We're just sitting back watching everything and talking about how much NYC has changed. He says "Well, you know everything is temporary" It felt like we had this conversation before. 

We notice a group of young punk rock kids and we start laughing, knowing that we were once them, and that someday they will be us. 

I feel calm and content.


Dirtbike asked me today why he hasn't seen anything that I've drawn. Good question. Between him asking me and me reading The War of Art, I was inspired to sit down and draw today. It felt good to work. 

Elvis Aaron Presley died today 36 years ago in 1977. Heres to eternal youth, hawaiian shirts and Jailhouse Rock!!

Self Immolation

You know the famous image of the Buddhist monk who set himself on fire to protest the war in Vietnam?

His name was Thich Quang Duc and he was 73 years old. 

I think it is important to remember his name. 

That will be all.

Hell's Cascade

Come along to Hell's Cascade, 
where all the dead dreams lay, 
side side with with old fears and hate.
Have a laugh with your nightmares, 
and forgotten loves there, 
old destinies murdered by fate.

All the reasons you lived for, 
sunshiny days and gore, 
pocket watches frozen in time.
Bounds of inspiration, 
and clouds of stagnation, 
cheap bottles of orange flavored wine.

You'll find your ground zero, 
and all your dead heros, 
exorcised demons and saints.
Your bald eagle screamings, 
and political leanings, 
and prophecies written in paint.

You've stretched out your tether, 
with the seasons you've weathered, 
at peace with the rhythms you made.
You can enjoy your casket, 
you hard headed bastard, 
I'll see you in Hell's Cascade.

Fear of Failure

It's this recurring theme in books I've read recently and a major weapon of resistance so I think I should relate my experience.

My fear of failure is so vast that I have forgone much to avoid it. School, music, love, life...

There was a point in my late teens that I spent a year holed up in my room. Slept all day, up all night. Self medicated...I was in New Castle but I didn't associate with anyone. I had written correspondence with John Gustin, he was my wire to the world outside my room. I wrote a lot, made a lot of art but shared it with no one. I was isolated, insulated from failure. 

I think the answer to fear of failing is acceptance. I will fail as all people do. Not everyone will enjoy my writing, not everyone will like my art. Thats ok. I create because I create, simple. If I meet success it's a bonus. 

haiku 7

fires always die
empires consume themselves
all things fade away

8-14-13 Night

2001 was the first time I went to BCP. It has been an eventful 12 years. A month here, a month there...half a year, and a couple year shots. The road has not been easy. I have scars. 

D-X F------X came up to chat for  aminute tonight. For a moment in time we weren't a convict and a guard. We weren't old friends either...the relationship is difficult to describe. Maybe it's akin to veterans of the same war? 

At any rate he says that he can see in my face that this run has taken a toll on me. It has, I see it tool; I feel it.

Humans aren't meant to live like this. It is harmful physically, spiritually, psychologically. I am fortunate to have a sense of meaning to my life. Fortunate to have a life outside of this.



Its this metallic taste & increased heart rate. A dirty feeling that wants to override every human instinct. It is Mara, the "devil", maya, delusion. 

I tasted it tonight again, and I don't like it.


The truly free individual is free only to the extent of his self-mastery; 
while those who will not govern themselves are condemned to find masters to govern them. 

Well you think you're all so clever,
and classless and free. 

But you're all fucking peasants, 
as far as I can see.

                               John Lennon

haiku 6

sometimes violence soothes
sometimes chaos calms the mind
rivers kill and heal


Sometimes I feel the weight of existence crushing me. I hear phrases like "home security" and "NSA surveillance"; I think 1984, I think cameras on every corner, I think censorship...eventually I think of camps for undesirables. 

When people use the term "Police State" they usually have no idea what they are invoking. I have spent a lot of time in jail, I know all about arbitrary rules and unquestionable authority. There has been a parallel world created behind these walls...I can only imagine if it was to spill over into the "free" world. These "Captains" and "Officers" have no real authority or rank in life...these are made up positions. They may as well be Captain of a pizza joint or Officers at a department store...

I'm off base a little but stay with me. My point is that power given to individuals by the masses will not be satisfied until that power is absolute. The people who wear badges to work, in a broad sense, don't care about society-they care about rule enforcement. And the masses...people, don't you see that you have given away this power? Government from the president to the beat cop ONLY HAVE AUTHORITY BECAUSE WE GAVE IT TO THEM. 

9-11's effects were long lasting. It scared people. It scared people so bad that they don't consider all this. 

TSA occupied airports and airplanes.
Police monitoring non-criminal citizen movements.
NSA stockpiling personal communique without a warrant.

Maybe these things make some people feel safer. Maybe enforced curfews, re-education camps, and more police and prisons would make people feel safer. 

Not me. I have seen unaccountable, unquestioned authority. It is ugly. I pray to St Jude that I am wrong. I hope that for humanity's sake I am. 


Evey and Freedom

The sequence in V for Vendetta where Evey is free from fear. Everything has been taken but one piece of her. Something that she won't give up.

There is a part of me that will never be incarcerated. It is what allows me to walk out and continue my life.