April 8, 2014

Soaring through the light blue and white sky. I don’t know what bird of prey this is, maybe a hawk? She looks like an oversized crow with the majestic flight of the eagle. This rapture is strong and confident as she flies over San Quentin State Prison. If I could fly I’d pass right over the prison too– without a pause. This bird has captured the wind and made a vehicle of it. Where is this bird going? Where did she come from? How far has she traveled today? The wing span must be more than four feet. This view would make a wonderful picture or reference photo for a painting. I would love to paint this bird in its glorious glide. This is freedom. This bird knows true freedom, something that has eluded me for the past 17 years and then four years before that. If I could change places with this bird. She’s gone and now all that’s left is the memory of this creature. A few feathers were missing from her right wing which only gave her more character. She seemed so close to me but it’s difficult to measure the exact distance as she slid by me patrolling the sky. Most of society will never get this bird’s view of San Quentin State Prison. I think about this bird more so because I am caged. Do the free one’s think about the caged ones more so because they are free? I don’t think so. When I flew as the bird I rarely thought of the caged. But the memory of this bird gives me hope as I re-play her soaring over me. Maybe one day I will be free as well, or is this my only glimpse of freedom…

I look forward to your contact and communication.

Facebook: Donald Ray Young

Twitter: @DonaldRayYoung


Donald Ray Young

P.O. Box E-78474

CSP San Quentin

San Quentin, CA 94974



5 Responses to “FREEDOM”

  1. sunikanya Says:

    “I think about this bird more so because I am caged. Do the free one’s think about the caged ones more so because they are free? I don’t think so. When I flew as the bird I rarely thought of the caged.”
    Those who are free, stumble or float through their days, with only thoughts of their priorities. Whether it be family, friends, career, trials or fun, their thoughts rest with the satisfactions of their hearts and with the maintenance of their lifestyles. But find someone whose priority includes a loved one in confinement, and you will see how the power of love can give birth to a transformation that merges hearts and minds. While the bird passes by, leaving only a memory of his journey, those who love, will commit their heart and their mind to always share your space. Although not in physicality, the mind and the heart are powerful, when love is present. You are carried in the depths of their hearts, always. Your soul is felt endlessly and there is an intense longing to connect to you, with joys and hopes.

    • sunikanya Says:

      That bird is but a glimpse of the world that awaits you, but her freedom also has limits that are the result of mankind’s need for power, and the corruption and destruction of the natural world we’ve been given. She is a bird, but you are a strong, intelligent, and innocent man. You will rise above the murky lies that have put you in this place. You will walk free, and once again see that bird soaring above. And all of those who think of the caged; who support you and care for you will sigh relief with you. And those who love you deeply, who share your inner torment in the darkness of the night, who experience every minute of the day, connected to your heart, will thank God that justice has finally taken the upper hand.

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