Terminal Island

Kevin Ridgeway

is grey and smells like tuna guts
the guards pad us down and stamp
our wrists in yellow mustard stink
he's in a wheelchair
never to walk again
a lie
he would walk out of those gates
several times and several chances
to get straight
and went on to outlive my mother
doing a life sentence
where it doesn't
smell like tuna guts
but it's silent
like all the answers
he may never hold.