House of Destruction
I approach my 19th year of incarceration, for which I was sentenced to life imprisonment, for crimes that im actually innocent of. I proclaimed my innocence then (in 2003), and I continue to declare it now. Prison is a stack uncaring, and inhospitable place, where souls become lost, and hears become hardened. A place that is crowded and congested in a hostile environment, where love and privacy does not exist. A place where the "air" is toxic, and with each breath that you take, you breathe in the choking fumes of hatred, hostility, revolution, and bitterness. Prison is an abnormal environment that does not offer any real reform, it's a place that was meant to deform you psychologically.
I approach my 15 1/2 year of being held captive, in the bleak confines of solitary confinement. Referred to by prisoners as the "box" or coo" ) as in chicken coop), solitary confinement is extreme isolation. It is essentially a prison within a prison. In the "coop", you can practically smell the misery, hatred, and anger oozing out of peoples pores. this is a place where overflowing thoughts overwhelm you, and unbearable loneliness cripples you. A place where hearts become frozen, minds become decayed, and hopelessness replaces hope. Solitary is the burial ground for souls, and is the flower that blooms mental anguish and emotional devastation.
I approach my 38th year of existence, and throughout the years that I spent on this earth, I have endured many hardships and harrowing experiences. I became a captive of the prison system at the age at 19, and the unfortunate reality is that i've spent half of my life in sercitude. Prison offers no comfort, or compassion, so whatever innocence I had left, has been shattered and reduced to rubble. Prison is agonizing enough, yet my corrupt overseers decided to bury me deep within the desolate confines of isolation.
Even though some things have changed in recent years, it does not erase the distressing times that i've endured. For many on the outside, it's hard to fathom the FACT that I have spent my 20's, nad mostly all of my 30's in A "box", orthe FACT that I went close to a decade without using A phone, or watching television. There was also A period of time when I spent 4 years indoors, without ever going outside. So despite the few reforms being made for solitary confinement, nothing can be done to unbreak my heart, unshatter my spirit, and unrattle my mind. Nothing can be done to erase the lonely days that I have experienced, or sleepless nights I suffered. Nothing can be done to undo me becoming desensitized, angry, bitter, irritable, or socially withdrawn, because the damage has already been done to me, within this "House of Destruction."
Submitted by: TROY HENDRIX
2022 oct 4
2021 dec 23
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2021 aug 1
2021 jan 6
Thank you for sharing yourself with us. I can only imagine what it's been like to spend the last 15 1/2 years in solitary confinement. Your description of prison, and specifically solitary as the "House of Destruction," is raw and visceral. You offered me a look into your world. I can see it, feel it, touch it. I know you say nothing can be done to change what you've been through, and I believe that's true. But what if something could be done to shift the future and offer you a sense of internal peace that no one and nothing could take away from you?
I work with a nonprofit organization called The Unconditional Freedom Project. Our vision is to transform prisons into monasteries, recasting the penitentiary as a place to contemplate and meaningfully contribute. We are not a religious program, though I know language like monastery can often be associated with that. We do believe that with the right resources, prison could be a monastic environment that encourages human flourishing though.
I have a workbook I'd like to offer you, and it can be sent directly from our publisher. It's called The Art of Soulmaking: The Path to Unconditional Freedom.
Our Art of Soulmaking program provides tools for improving the interior lives of incarcerated people. This 8-week course guides a person through a journey of inquiry and personal liberation. It starts with building a foundation of practice through journaling, soul searching exercises, yoga and meditation. From there, participants walk through four lessons on reclaiming power and restoring dignity.
We know that people do not change in isolation, that's why I was so moved by your solitary confinement post. Change happens when we recognize the whole of a human. Another component of our program is exchanging letters with a Volunteer Correspondent who is also on their own Soulmaking journey. The desire to feel truly seen by another, to be felt by another, is what makes us human. Not only is it natural, it is medicine. It’s essential to grow.
Would you be interested in receiving an Art of Soulmaking workbook to explore the program and write with a pen pal? If so, let me know where to send and I will have our publisher ship one out to you.
Wishing you health, safety, and peace.
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As Gregory Curry says, "Freedom First!"
I hope one day that everyone is on the right side of these prison walls.
Assata once wrote, “And, If I know anything at all/Its that a wall is just a wall/And nothing more at all/It can be broken down.”
Peace and love, Troy
So everyone can hear your story and they will feel the same way that many do!!
Your innocence will be proven and you will be free and i definitely can’t wait for that day!! I love u babe