They say the best time to escape prison is before you get into it. As the the fireworks light up the sky outside, I scan the room for a way out. I know it doesn’t exist, but I still look anyway. I’m always looking for a way out.
Clack! Clack! Clack! Clack! The guard’s night stick raps across the bars. He knows it’s late, but he does it anyway. In the morning he gets to walk out of the front door, but tonight he’s in here with us. Like Indians on a reservation, we’re locked up in the land of the free.
I could blame my father – or lack of one. I could blane my mother for not having an abortion. I could blame the cop who arrested me or the judge who sentenced me, but none of them are in this cell with me. It’s all my fault and there’s only one thing I can do about it now – escape.
I start in my mind and move through the bars, down the hall to the first door. There the hallway leads past the commons area, a security station, and the cafeteria. Past the eats is the gym, library, and infirmary. There’s one more set of doors before the police station followed by the doors to the entrance. It would be quicker to go straight through the wall.
Let’s say someone out there cared enough to back a dump truck straight into the wall outside my window. And let’s say that I were able to then hop in the back of that truck and ride off. What’s to stop every cop with a rifle from shooting me dead right there on the spot?
No, if I am to escape, it must be by there doing, not by me. They must want me to leave. They must be the ones to expunge me from their cells like the garbage of society I’ve become. It will be as if physics itself has chosen to turn its back on law and grant clemency to the gravity that up until this point has held me to this earth for so long. I look up at my new home in the sky, the birds, my kin, the clouds, my friends.