This poem was written by someone who has faced incarceration. It was originally published in the Voices from Prison and the Edge newsletter (issue no. 34), a publication of the Adeodatus Prison Ministry under the Augustinian Defenders of the Rights of the Poor.
Sometimes the emptiness can be so big that it will swallow me whole. But I am more than just a body because I have a heart and a soul. When life feels like an unnecessary or cruel and useless burden, I must remind myself that its not over. I just want to stop hurting. Booze and drugs were the way I thought I could make my escape, until I learned that a hug and a good talk are all it really takes. So, if you’re thinking that you’re the only one and no one understands, I’ve been there too, and I care about you so here is my hand. I can’t promise that I’ll take away the pain, but maybe I can tell you something that can make you smile again.
“In loving others, and caring for them, you are on a journey. Where is journey’s end if not the Lord our God, the One we should love with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our mind? We have not yet reached him, but our neighbor is here at our side. Look after this companion of your pilgrimage if you would reach the One whom you desire to be with forever.”