Pondering Prison

I was standing in a prison.

Looking out.

In Prison



I was standing in an abandoned prison.

Looking out.

And took this picture.

When I looked at the little screen and saw this image

It struck me.

I wondered about those men who stood long ago where I freely stood now.

Would they think my curiosity odd?

When they could not-

I walked in freely.

I walked out freely.


I looked at this image again.

I wonder.

How many of us stand within our own darkness.

Our own confinement.

And cannot, will not, choose not,

To walk out.

60 thoughts on “Pondering Prison

  1. I love this! Both image and verse. It could be scrawled out in one of a dozen notebooks, I’ll probably never find it, but it reminds me of a piece I wrote a couple of years ago which pondered a similar question.


      • Just reading this triggered my file cabinet search in my brain…. I think I might know which journal its in. I’ll check when I get back home later today. (I couldn’t sleep and am already up and out at a cafe. Oh, out of curiosity, are you also an insomniac or on you in an earlier time zone?)


        • If you are in Seattle I am in an earlier time zone. Ohio zone. And I don’t have insomnia. But I get up early enough before work to ride my bike (created a bike desk so I can ride a real bike on my trainer and be on the computer at the same time.) I ride for an hour before work. Makes for not always great responses from me. šŸ™‚


          • I found the prose that this piece of yours reminded me of. I wrote it back in 2009 and recalled that I had emailed it to a friend. I still have no idea where the original journal is. (Just moved out of my apartment in June and completely into William’s house.Most of my things are still in boxes. Haven’t been able to deal with the “stuff” yet.) Anyway, after rereading it I realized it’s actually a poem in the making. I’ll finish editing it and get it up later today.


  2. There is one curious thing I have to say after reading all the comments…..DONT THESE PEOPLE SLEEP?? LOOK AT THE TIMES. Otherwise, Colleen this is wonderful, both the writing and the photography! Is that a guardtower???


  3. What a great image capture! The idea of being trapped…unable to get out…languishing…It sounds soul-withering. It’s worth a look inward to be sure we haven’t unwittingly compromised our freedoms with a stint in self-imposed prison. Whew! Pretty deep stuff, Colleen.


    • It is worth looking inward isn’t? And we may not even be aware of the prison we keep ourselves in. But, I’ve known some who imprison themselves and feel safer there. Having no desire to be free.


  4. This was profound, Colleen. Simply beautifully expressed. We all are in our cages or our own prisons, at one time in our life or other.
    My last marriage was a little bit controlling and confining, along with negative elements. I felt huge relief, once I decided I would bear God’s wrath and divorce him. My first two husbands were unfaithful, which the Bible says “If he should leave, you need not follow…” My last husband just was not the right fit, I felt myself drowning and only after 13 years of trying to fix things, did I leave. My minister told me she was thinking if I hadn’t I may have drowned, I was just barely treading water. Your posts speak to me, Colleen.


  5. So many layers, so true. There are a variety of prisons, inner, outer…and for whatever the reason it can be so hard to leave. Yet, in time, sometimes that is all it takes, time and hope, and then people leave their prison. Still the inner prison is the hardest.
    Well written and said, Colleen, yoy have thinking even more. That is an interesting thought too. What would those men from the past think of your curiosity? History is fascinating…I wonder what they would think of the world with the technology we have as it stands. Amazement or befuddlement?


    • When ever I stand in a place that I know holds the story of others I can’t help but want to KNOW those stories.

      And only speaking for myself, knowing today’s technology I am both amazed AND befuddled. šŸ˜‰


    • I remember watching a very very old movie. There was a young boy genie in a bottle. A very plush and lovely bottle. But at one point he said something to the effect that “even a beautiful prison is still a prison”. I’ve always remembered that. And no matter how “nice” our environment or ‘space’ is, if we are not free, we are trapped. I’m with you. I don’t want to go there again either.


  6. Tough one to comment on for me. I have had situations that I created and chose to free myself. Then I have a little problem with a thing called depression. I don’t choose it, but I certainly work hard to recover.


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