Bad Jacket

Day 73. The sadness and death bleed from my pores in here. The tears of angels and prison tattoos, the bitter hatred laugh of devils and the hours that absorb me. All the love and air, the taste of wind and sun, the mere fire of a gas stove, a 3 am hour of restlessness in front of a window that opens to a streetlight, all of this a dream now, all of this in my head, my stomach sore from emptiness, my body cold beneath a sorry wool blanket and an over-bleached sheet –the loss of shadows in this half lit cell, the loss of grace. I think of you on nights defined by a dimmed florescent light, I think of the angel eyes of my dead dog, my dead love. I think of Chico living in some obese, child-man’s rooming house space wondering where his daddy went.

I write this to you, Helena, because I started it with you.  It started with a touch of your skin in a hot desert park.  Odds are if I beat this case and don’t get life in prison, I will more than likely finish this book alone before dawn in a shitty apartment as the other books were finished, or I will be in a different woman’s place tapping it out while she sleeps in another room with my dog next to her. If I get convicted I will end my life before transport comes for me, or I will decide to end it day by day, in a protective-custody cell writing out the works that have been haunting me but had to lie in the wake of precedence. But this book will be destroyed, for a number of reasons.

–But for now I continue this to you, Helena, a muse and love in a few of my writings.

It’s the hours that eat you in here, Helena. The down time, the hours of freezing, processed air and zero privacy. Timing my work-outs, bowel movements, masturbation and even tears around the next deputy’s cell walk. My pink socks are dirty from the concrete floor in here. 20 hours a day in this cell. Pencil stubs and yellow lined paper. The DA wants to see me twist in the wind.  Narcs are sent in dressed as inmates, detectives thumb through my stories and poems they make me turn into Property every week, they’ve turned trash to torpedoes, sneaking in my cell and reading my paperwork.

Jack the PI says the truth always comes out in court. I play that in my head like a mantra, to get me into an hour’s nightmare every morning, an hour before the lights flip on full power, and the dim grey walls become white like Mercury, and the intercom blasts instructions for razors and showers, for the med-line then breakfast, which in two hours will be a tablespoon of cold oatmeal and half a frozen apple.


-Excerpt from Bad Jacket, out sooner than later.  It’s a book about a writer falsely accused of a sex crime and sent to jail for 128 days.  Been tapping it out, well, transcribing from tablets.  More peeks as I feel them necessary.  Hope you all like it…

About Jeff Stewart

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2 Responses to Bad Jacket

  1. says:

    I haven’t read anything of this magnitude and quality in years. Looking forward to the book in its entirety.

  2. Cherene says:

    Very very intense and poetic… I like seeing this new way of writing.

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