Journal entries – March 20-25, 2020

March 20, 2020

Meant to be, Florida Line featuring Bebe Rexha

“Love does that”

“All day long a little burro (donkey) labors sometimes with heavy loads on her back and sometimes just with worries about things that bother like burros.

And worries, as we know, can be more exhausting than physical labor.

Once in a while, a kind monk comes to her stable and brings a pear, but more than that, he looks into the burro’s eyes and touches her ears.

And for a few seconds, the burro is free and ever seems to laugh,

Because love does that. Love frees.” Meister Eckhart

While the world seems to be on fire and so many are anxious, stressed out and afraid, I think of love. Of the friends and loved ones in my life right now, last year, last decade; and I thank them. Through the love we have shared, we have made each other’s lives just a little easier. Because love frees. No matter if you’re in a cell on Texas death row or in an apartment in a big city somewhere. Love has the power to free. So try to focus on Love and knowing what is to be will be. In the meantime, don’t waste a moment – LOVE!

March 22, 2020

Tick Tock, Stevie Ray and Jimmy Vaughan

“Rule your mind or it will rule you” Horace

I think about how the USA and Europe are all sitting in their living spaces – home, apt, shelter, or prison cell and the main topic is the covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. Even here where I am interacting with about 20 men on Texas death row, the focus of our conversations is coronavirus. Unusual things continue to occur like this past Friday the guards came to every prisoner’s cell asking if we wanted to make a phone call. Why? Because we have had visits suspended so we were allowed a 5-minute call. I called 5 people, Linda, Kay, Gretchen, Dina and finally Jim. No one answered until I tried Jim and got through to him and his wife Sue! I was concerned about them because they live in upstate New York and by listening to NPR news, Coronavirus is bad in New York. They’re fine and staying inside the house.

Everything is being affected by the coronavirus and it’s insanity that in the USA the officials in charge seem to be making up the plan of action as they go. Not much any of us can do about it – what we must focus on is ruling our mind so we will not panic or lose control. What is to be will be. All we can do is stay brave and strong and face it when it comes. That’s my plan and win lose or draw I will give the confrontation my best effort – in that regard it’s just another day in the life of a D/R prisoner.

March 24, 2020

Ooooh child, Five stair steps

“Faith is having a positive attitude about what you can do and not worrying at all about what you can’t do” – Unknown

We made it. This day, me and the guys on my pod (housing area) received their commissary purchases which allowed us to buy what we need to survive any sudden “Coronavirus lockdown”. I got extra writing supplies and postage, soap and toothpaste and dishwashing detergent to clean with. And coffee along with food. Rice and beans galore and ramen noodles too.

The first person who has the virus and works at a TDCJ prison in Houston was found. I can hear the clock ticking until we are put on emergency lockdown because of coronavirus. Now at least I have to make it through the next 60 days I think.

Now the Houston metro area is ordered to stay home and maintain social distance. One by one the large cities in Texas are going on lockdown. Some politicians are calling for the governor to call for and impose a state wide lockdown. It’s hard to imagine the free world – one fifth of the global population is on lockdown. In a way I’m accustomed to lockdown every 90 days but for the free world to be on lockdown is crazy.

I have had an attorney phone call with my legal team this afternoon. Imagine me being taken to the visitation room, put in a visit booth and allowed to talk to two attorneys and our investigator via land line phone. And they’re at their homes on a video conference call. The CCA (court of criminal appeal) is shut down so we wait.

Tuesday March 25, 2020

I’d love to change the world, Ten years after

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced to them”. Maya Angelou

This morning I heard that the first TDCJ prisoner to test positive was being treated at the prison hospital in Galveston, Texas. That is the indicators I listen for it tells me that coronavirus IS within the TDCJ prison system and I believe we will be affected about it. Each day I wake up mildly surprised to see we are not on emergency Coronavirus lockdown. I’m glad I’m ready! I have been working on the usual today, writing and feeling good. Yesterday was stressful for me and I am grateful to have made it through the full moon in one piece. Nowadays, I am super conscious, awake and trying to avoid any pitfalls that might appear out of nowhere.

Late PM now and I just got some jpays and know that the post offices in England are closed! That is crazy. I heard in USA at least for now the mail will continue to be delivered. I ask myself if/when the entire USA goes on lockdown, who will operate the Jpay website?! I try to tell my friends if all else fails, write via air-mail. Times are almost unbelievable, having to think about such things, but that is what we deal with and for now, we just have to make it through to today. Tomorrow is a new beginning and I look towards that fact and hope you do too.