Benediction

Michael kneels on concrete just behind a row of empty folding chairs. One by one, others enter quietly and join him. A few kneel, others sit. All seem to be in an attitude of anticipation. They are accustomed to waiting.

The wail of a steam-powered whistle sounds and the frenetic pace of life in prison slows, falters, halts. It is time for the 10:00 a.m. count.

The vimpa drapes my shoulders; its fringes hang to my knees. I clean my hands and wipe them dry and steady myself in...

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About the Author

Philip Brasfield is the author of Deathman Pass Me By (Borgo Press, 1983). 2011 marks his thirty-fourth year in prison.

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