March 12, 2014

Blog Post(03/03/14)

by William McKenzie (author's profile)

Transcription

BLOG POST March 3rd 2014

I will open with a poem wrote yesterday, just one little problem. I can't name the words I wish to express, hopefully before this flies it will be on top if not, name it yourselves.

I believe giving title to anything I write is so hard, it's what my writer's block sometime is the victim of.

Speaking of writer's block. "College Kid" I'm still waiting on a response to your challenge. I'd just like your opinion on my Haiku's. I'm feeling a bit self exposed here. You think you don't like doing something new.

"A SHADE OF GAY"
By Billy

In prison the gay boys fight over other boys
and not for what's right, their rights
It's really hard to tell who's telling lies
While seeing them not care who lives or dies
All this time, I still don't know why
Watching one gay boy's punch
makes another gay boy cry
Doesn't humanity in prison bleed
Mustn't someone here say please
Open your eyes, gay boys. I plead!
Bruises may heal, but Billy' scared memories
Never will
Seen so many gay boys fetal, weeping, on the floor
As yet another lover walks out the gay bar's door
Hear them crying why me, why me almost every night
O' gay boy, how I remember your plight
So scared to be alone in this world that never is
Relentless - cold - darkness all around
Listen, gay boy, listen, what is that sound
Believe this, gay boy. This is no way which to live
The more you take, the more you take
The less you give
I'm sorry to break it to you, dear, but that's backwards
The more you give, the more you give
The less you'll need to take
You hold the keys to your chains
Open your eyes, gay boys. You'll lessen your pains
Do not stay perpetual prisoners of your own past
Believe me, if you do, if you do, it will always
Last!
Open your eyes, I beg, see from where we've come
Don't miss anymore of your freedom that's begun
In truth, we are people unto our own
So long, living from crimes and offenses of bigots
We've almost succumbed
Trust me, you're alive. You don't need to accept this anymore
When it's all said and done
It will always be our futures, not our past
That will
Determine who we are and what
We've become.

Peace.

===
March 3, 2014

Okay, friends. There are a few issues I need to speak about. You can do with them as you want. I hope that a couple of them are given some serious thought.

One of those issues—I pray you find it in your souls to stop and render aid, so to speak. Either way, I will still share my fears, my tears, my poems, my joys, and sobriety triumphs. Which by the way, I'm still clean and sober. My sobriety birthday is May 30, 2011. But today, especially today—man, I'm clean and sober.

Okay, issue #1.

Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB)
"up to 25 1/0 of U.S. inmates have latent TB infection"

Inmates are subject to have MTB 6-10 times that of you who's reading Billy's blog. No, Mom, I don't have it (yet), but...

That or this is my point.

Every year since I've been incarcerated, the Texas prison system tests its inmates for MTB during their intake month. Billy got to prison in February, so Billy has a TB test each year along with bloodwork.

I even see a provider for about ten good minutes. Until this year, it has never changed. However, this year, the Texas prison system didn't test me for MTB. When I asked why this was my direct answer was this: there is a nationwide shortage of test liquid.

Okay, people, open your eyes to these facts because if you don't care for the inmates—that's cool, I got it.

---

March 13, 2014
Most feel like we're worthless anyway. I'm sorry you feel this way. So let me do what the mainstream press is doing. Even if you don't care about us what about yourself or your family.

Without the inmate population being tested, the prison system are putting you—the public—in danger. Here's how that works.

1.) Now we are asked: are you coughing up blood?
2.) Are you having night sweats?
3.) Or trouble breathing?

That's all very nice, if the ones that are sick are diagnosed before he or she is let back into society. MTB transmission is well-documented and other inmates. Overcrowding, poor ventilation, delayed diagnosis—there you go! And failure to adhere to recognized standards for prevention, screening, and containment.

Look, I'm trying to make it out of here alive. But when I was told last month by the C.I.D. nurse—that's the Center for Infectious Diseases—that there is a nationwide shortage of test liquid, bells and whistles went off!

Do you have any clue—one, just one sick person can really cause a lot of damage, if not deaths? My father, he died on Christmas Day. He was on OZ. My mom is also on OZ. The young, the old, and the sick go first. Which are you?

Next page, next issues.

Okay, y'all. Most a lot of y'all know I have a seizure disorder. Well, it's not a mild one. At times, I've lost control of my bowels and bladder. I am very heavily medicated. This is not my fault, nor is it fun sometimes.

When a new pill tech hands me my pills, their first response is, "You take all that at once?" I don't take meds for any other reason other than not to have seizures. Seizures really hurt. I don't like them.

I also don't like having to have my blood drawn on a regular basis. This is because I am an ex IV drug user, and it makes the poor girl drawing my blood hates her job. But did you know I want these tests not because I'm a pain freak, but because my medicine levels keep me from having seizures. Well, at least really bad ones.

I take 16 ob mg, or eight tablets of carbamazephine 200 mg, oral every morning with four caps phenyton 50d 100 mg. Still, most of the time, my levels run low to the low-end spectrum. I also take two Bp meds, so sometimes I sleep very hard. It's rare, but I do.

Last night around 11:00-11:30 PM on March 2, 2014, an Officer Nelson came by my cell to do a roster count. That means we get up and take out IDs to the cell door for inspection. No problem. I'm usually up and writing or reading anyway.

Last night, I was asleep. I was so asleep I didn't hear any count called. I didn't hear Officer Nelson enter my cell. I did hear Officer Nelson scream my name. I didn't hear Officer Nelson slam my cell door and leave. Other inmates sure did. I had no clue.

Later that night or early morning, right before pill call and Billy having to get up to a 3 AM walk to a window and be handed my pills, an Officer Thurson was able to wake. But it was for a disciplinary case for "failure to obey a direct order."

The order in question is not waking up.

If all this was going on like the officers and inmates were saying, it did. I would have gotten up. For me to be asleep at that time was rare anyway. I told the officer I was very sorry, but I truly didn't hear anything. I was still given a write up.

If two trained officers saw an inmate that could have been in distress, did not call for a supervisor or a medical staff member, why is it my fault? Believe me when I say this: Billy does not try and make enemies of any staff members for the sole purpose. I rely on those officers for this very thing. My safety, not from prison staff but when I fall out and have my seizures, they are the first respondents. If you ever have a seizure and wake up from it with a face over yours, it's scary as hell.

Last night was just as scary. I may be dealing with a disciplinary case that could have for reaching CDA sequences for me. And neither of them are very good at all.

This is where Billy needs y'all help. Please, I beg you.

I'm going to give y'all a number to call. This office is the advocates for inmates. But for them to do anything, an outside like family members off a friend of the inmates must call. Well, I consider y'all both. You don't have to leave your names or numbers if you don't want to. Please! I can't lose what I've worked so hard to get.

Please call on my behalf and ask that an investigation take place for an incident which occurred on March 2, 2014 at 11:00-11:30 PM during a roster count. Ask why proper procedure did not take place where I was found unresponsive. This is all I ask, please.

Ombudsman Coordinator:
(936) 437-8067
ombudsman@tdcj.state.tx.us
Fax: (936) 437-8067

Please?

I thank each of y'all. Hope you enjoy the poem and I have a title: Shades of Gay. I will admit, it was not my idea. An old school dude called N.Y. was kind enough to read it and stamp it with its title. I actually like: Great Things To You and Yours.

2011

Peace,
Billy

P.S.
Dennis, Bookman:
I haven't fallen from Earth. Got latest package. Thank you! Will be in touch soon.

Stay well, my friend.

Favorite

Replies (3) Replies feed

Hatchue Posted 5 years, 9 months ago. ✓ Mailed 5 years, 9 months ago   Favorite
Hello, Billy,
I'm sending this message on behalf of one of my pen pals, Khalid Shamsud'Diyn (aka "Bayh"). He asked me to tell you that he writes for a newspaper and read an article that you submitted for publication that he would like to talk to you about. He tells me that the prison authorities in Maryland have relaxed their policy in order for him to receive mail from other prisoners as long as they are sent third party without the address of either prisoner on the envelope. He would like you to send him a message via whichever contact you choose. He didn't tell me what the article was about or anything like that.

His address is:
Khalid Shamsud'Diyn, Esquire #330816 B-C-704
Jessup Correctional Institute
Post Office 534
Jessup, MD 20794-0534

Hannah S.

katespudson Posted 5 years, 9 months ago. ✓ Mailed 5 years, 9 months ago   Favorite
Hi Billy,

I mailed you a few times over the last little while and I haven't heard back. It makes me concerned that you're not getting my letters for whatever reason! I hope you're okay!

In any case, I've been thinking about you a lot these days! I'm also really enjoying your blog :)

All the best, Kate

William McKenzie Posted 5 years, 8 months ago.   Favorite
(scanned reply – view as blog post)

We will print and mail your reply by . Guidelines

Other posts by this author

Subscribe

Get notifications when new letters or replies are posted!

Posts by William McKenzie: RSS email me
Comments on “Blog Post(03/03/14)”: RSS email me
Featured posts: RSS email me
All Between the Bars posts: RSS