Alabama Department of Corrections


I work a path of gravel and stone.
I work in places most people never have known.
Eyes of evil are around me all day long,
Long stares of hatred, some not so visibly shone.

The mouth of men who spew ungodly gestures,
Shouts of obscenities, and vulgar suggestions.
I work a path of gravel and stone.
I work a place people have not known.

I hear cries from their voice in desperation,
Wanting out, I want more food from the kitchen please they shout.
I walk up and down the path of gravel and stone,
Trying not to forget I will go home.

The doors around me slam with sudden restraints.
I am not locked up, I am free,
I go home this afternoon you see.
Up around the path of gravel and stone.

Your hands have to be visible and remain in place.
There are rules and regulations giving everyone their space.
Grab my arm and you'll be put in your place.
I'll write your disciplinary for reaching into my soul.
There is no place you can go.

Your feet get shackled when you travel outside,
I have to carry the gun at my side.
It is for everyone's protection even yours
When the homeboys find out your going for a ride.

It's not for fun you see,
I got the funeral detail.
Your mama died and you wasn't there
Cause you raised hell and now you are in the big jail.

When I am walking into that cement institution.
I have to see, hear and listen to your torment and dissolution.
When I walk on gravel and stone I have to watch and be alert,
Because my friend if you see some form of weakness
And catch me unaware its my face in the dirt,
You'll show me no mercy if you shine a shank to my side,
So I am watchful as I walk the gravel and stone with razor wire.

When I walk down the cement and you come to close to me,
Should I be afraid and wonder if you're in your right mind,
Or should I wonder if it's your time or mind.

I am here on this gravel and stone cement for eight hours of a day,
I've come to realize I've been entombed
And been molded into gravel and stone cement institution,
I now struggle to go back home.

God don't let me stay long,
I fear I may feel locked up in this cement home,
Carry it with me when I am gone.
Let me feel free when I leave this gravel and stone.

With a good conscience that I did my short time today
And now I can hit the gate wide open and go home
To a house made of brick and wood,
Home to people that love me as they should,
Where I don't have to watch my back,
Home where I can leave and not clock out or check out,
Home where I can speak freely.

God help me stay free
From the beast of evil that I see.
I have to leave the gravel and stone
That has become the hardened cement you see.


Brenda Evangeline Seger

Used with Special Permission of the Author
Copyright © January 19, 2002 - All Rights Reserved

and may not be duplicated without permission

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