Behind the Wall features submissions from our relatives incarcerated inside the criminal justice system. This poem is from Vicki L., a member of the Stride Program for restorative justice at the Women’s Correctional Centre in Headingley, Manitoba.

Paper chase,
Such a deceiving trait,
A demon in disguise,
Ready to destroy your life,
Too stubborn to realize,
The outcome of wasted time.
Something that we do,
Always taken for granted,
On the outs,
There is never enough,
Rushing through traffic,
Like maniac,
We lose self-control,
Blinded by drugs and alcohol.
Clouds your mind,
Ignoring responsibilities,
Blacks you out.
You just have killed,
And you don’t remember at all.
Numbs your pain,
Make it go away,
You plead with sweat,
When will it ever end?
You live to die,
Where do you stand on your lifeline?
Live fast, die young? Or
Learn more, grow old.
Money, time, alcohol, drugs & death,
Which is your preference?