16 long years. Almost as long as Joseph. A Via Dolorosa walk of shame. Mental torture. Prison bars. Lonely cell. Alone.
He prayed a lot.
Didn’t stop the bullies, didn’t stop the violence perpetrated on his soul.
16 years. He wrote in prison. Wrote alot. Read alot. When he wasn’t watching out for them. On the constant up and up. Watching everything, everyone, observing it all. He watched stabbings and betrayals. He watched yard fights and kingpins fall. He took it all in.
He didn’t join the gang. Walked the yard alone. 16 long years.
They opened the doors to the prison and finally let him out. A new gang member had tried to shiv him 2 weeks before for initiation rites.
He didn’t really know what to do at that point. Didn’t trust no one, not a single god-damned soul. Didn’t know what the lesson was in all this. It wasn’t about correction or deterrence. It was brutal.
He didn’t feel it taught him to be a better man….just a smarter one.
Joseph was supposed to get his come uppance. But him, he never got it. What was the point of all of this?
He walked down the street alone away from the toxicity and he vaguely felt that he was merely going outta the frying pan and into the fire.