Without A Vision, You Can’t Go Forward

?Without a vision, you can?t go forward?
Marilyn Buck, Dec. 13 1947 to August 3, 2010

Marilyn Buck fi rst went to prison
in 1973, serving 4 years of a 10 year
sentence. When she went back to prison
in 1985 she wrote, ?For prisoners,
writing is a life raft to save one from
drowning in a prison swamp. I turned
to poetry, an art of speaking sparely
but fl agrantly.? She was awarded three
PEN Prison Writing Program prizes,
including fi rst prize for poetry in 2001.

Fluent in Spanish, Marilyn helped
Spanish?speaking prisoners, supporting
them in protecting their human
rights. She also taught English as a Second
Language to help people advocate
for themselves. Marilyn was incarcerated
for 15 years in California at FCI
Dublin. Below we share words from
dear friends who did time with her:

Hamdiya Cooks (Admin. Dir. LSPC,
former Dir. Of CCWP):

Marilyn is already missed. She
supported all freedom struggles. I was
in prison many years with Marilyn
starting from 1994. I will always hold
her dear as a friend in my mind and
heart. I remember all the times we
spent working, playing and even crying
together. I remember once I went
to Marilyn crying, saying I could not
do 1 more day. By the time we ended
our talk, I could do another day. We
played racket ball, did yoga, did poetry
together, we collaborated helping
people get their GEDs. We worked
well together to be there for each other
and for others. I will always love her.

Laura Whitehorn (Former political

I missed Marilyn every day of
the 11 years after I left her in prison
in Dublin, despite our phone calls and
letters. Marilyn?s courage was not
only her willingness to put her body
on the line in solidarity with national
liberation movements. It was also in
her willingness to face head on the
endless, deep and almost invisible
ways racism affects every second of
our lives, and the privilege we white
people inherit for being white. Nothing
about Marilyn?s politics was automatic.
Every position was thought
out, fought for, studied, held up to
inspection. She leaves us bereft of
her presence, but enriched by her example:
the fearlessness of a woman
unafraid to admit that she felt fear.

Linda Evans (Former political
prisoner, All of Us or None organizer)

If Marilyn were with us now,
she?d be telling us not to make a
fuss over her, to support the other
political prisoners and get on with
the struggle! I admire and love and
miss so much about her. She always
found ways to help and support other
women inside. Under unimaginably
diffi cult conditions, Marilyn
contributed to liberation through
her writing, solidarity statements,
visits, and correspondence. Her
creativity and open-mindedness
about ways she could be an activist
inside are an example for all of us.
Moving forward in the struggle, escalating
our resistance, and caring
for each other in the process, are
ways we can keep Marilyn?s spirit
alive. Dare to struggle, dare to win!
Marilyn Buck, presente!