Too late for Sista K!

(died March 18th, 2008)
by Beverly Henry, CCWF
We spoke very seldom
we even worked at the same prison factory
without warning you left work one day and never returned.
I spotted you in the prison medication line and noticed how you secretly slid your antiviral pack into your pocket and slowly walked away.
I wanted to talk to you then but I simply passed you with a smile.
Then I hear from your friends and cell mates that Sista K is really sick and our medical providers are refusing to evaluate you.
The more I hear about your symptoms the more I find you on my mind; a part of me knows why your health is failing in spite of you telling me ?it?s leukemia.?
When I could no longer wait for medical to call for you, I pushed your wheelchair as we talked that warm afternoon and I left you in their care.
Finally, someone would help you.
My only regret, Sista K, is that I was too late!
Rest in Peace.
March 20th, 2008

Prison Creative Arts Project

The Prison Creative Arts Project (PCAP) based at the University of Michigan collaborates with incarcerated adults, incarcerated youth, urban youth and the formerly incarcerated to strengthen our community through creative expression. PCAP believes that everyone has the capacity to create art.
Art is necessary for individual and societal growth, connection and survival. It should be accessible to everyone. The values that guide their process are respect and collaboration in which vulnerability, risk, and improvisation lead to discovery and resilience, persistence, patience, love and laughter. They are joined with others in the struggle for social justice, and make possible spaces in and from which the voices and visions of the incarcerated can be expressed.
This spring, PCAP hosted the Thirteenth Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners. The exhibit included 387 works of art by over 233 artists, from forty-one prisons through out the state of Michigan. Every year despite limited resources, exhibiting artists create work in a rich range of styles, mediums, and themes shedding light on the talents to be found behind prison walls and inviting the public to bear witness to the prison artists? creativity and expression.
In conjunction with the exhibition, PCAP hosts a series of educational events to raise awareness about mass incarceration and to inspire dialogue between the incarcerated and the community at large. This year?s speaker series included CCWP member Shawnna D. who gave a keynote address titled ?What Do You Stand For??
For more information about the Prison Creative Arts Project or the Annual Exhibition of Art by Michigan Prisoners visit their website at www.prisonarts.org or write to:
The Prison Creative Arts Project
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109