(Soft piano keys play)
I’m in this world all alone
The only heartbreak I hear is my own
I don’t know where I am, but I wonder…
is there anyone there…
is there anyone anywhere…
does anyone care…
can anyone hear…
The spectral nature of it, I never know where this feminine voice is coming from. Sang in a melancholy voice, it is always close but distant. Tangible but immaterial. Guarded but vulnerable. It has the ability to pierce the soul in a way that the isolation of being on Texas death row hasn’t…As familiar as she is to me, I have no idea who she is to me. I only know that her dismal tone is a repetitive rendition to a recurring dream. A dream that invades when heavy, exhausted, eyelids close. A dream that transports me along a crystal arc of reverie to the edge of conscious thought. Moving through a menagerie of thoughts, desires and phantoms seemingly created by the minds of dreamers everywhere. A collection of intents displaced by the waking world that all appears as a blur until the courtroom comes into focus.
There’s an African-American male prosecutor standing upright at a table that’s positioned to the left of the judge’s bench. A single manila folder lays closed on the table in front of him. Beside it stands a small stack of yellow id-sized cards. He appears flippant, somewhat agitated, towards the process that is taking place.
Seated at a table to the right of the judge’s bench is a white male dressed as a legal aid. His demeanor is haggard. Rushed. Desperate. Shaky hands move over three sheets of paper on the table in front of him as he looks up on a platform to where his client is…
A young Black boy standing at a gallows tree in the middle of the courtroom. Naked. Hair a mess. Dirty yellow complexion. Noose around his neck. Hands bound behind his back. The wildness of his eyes gives away the fact that he’s scared. The tears that well up elude to the idea of an uncertain future as he looks to the judge…
A simple name placard reads „Final Act.“ Seated behind the bench, a distinguished white male dressed in simple black robes begins to speak.
(…) So, entertain me.
[Legal Aid] looking over papers
Your Honor, if it may please the court, we think it’s imperative that the record HAS ALREADY reflected that my client tested negative twice for gunshot residue and was also excluded from all DNA test.
[Prosecutor] heavy sigh
I’d like to say that there’s compelling evidence in this case that is tailored to my office securing a conviction…
Again, your Honor, pointing to the record…The administration pointedly went against their own policy in an effort to secure this „evidence.“ My client was diagnosed as having a psychotic break and was thereby placed on suicide watch as a result…
No one gives a fuck…We are prepared to move forward with this death penalty case. I’ve already been notified by the 5th Circuit that they’ll back our approach…
What?! Objection! Your Honor–
[Judge] bangs gavel
Save it, you’re over-ruled.
Motions to transcriber
Strike that last comment from the record…
[Boy hears haunting melody of the soft piano keys]
I’m trapped inside of me
And I am unable to get free
I’ve locked myself inside my mind
And the key I cannot find…
Is there anyone there…
Is there anyone anywhere…
Does anyone care…
Can anyone hear…
[Legal Aid] begins to move erratically looking over papers
Looks up at the scared boy. Opens the manila folder slightly to peek at something. Looks back at the boy and smiles smugly.
[Judge] looking at the young Black boy
Do you wish to waste anymore of the courts time?
Well, your Honor, I’d like the record to reflect that I’ve shown due diligence in presenting factual evidence on behalf of my client, as to why this case should not be tried. We know that DNA evidence doesn’t lie. We know that he never fired a gun. The illegal footage taken shortly after his arrest shouldn’t be admitted based on the administration’s own testimony…
[Judge] sighs heavily before yawning
[Prosecutor] looks at wrist watch impatiently
To further depict the negligence of the State, we’d like to RE-PRESENT the prosecution’s personal handwritten notes that are clearly biased and shows racial prejudice against my client. Not only does that intent taint the process of being afforded fairness, but the record WILL SHOW that the State made an effort to doctor the evidence that was uncovered against them.
Does the State have a rebuttal?
Yes, your Honor. May I approach the bench?
Prosecutor reaches down to pick up one of the yellow id-sized cards from the small stack on the table.
[Judge] the judge nods as the prosecutor approaches.
[Prosecutor] he walks up and hands the judge the card.
[Judge] the judge looks at the yellow card to see the Monopoly Man running past a jailer that seems to be giving him a warning. The judge smiles…
I took an oath to uphold the history of this office…
Prosecutor turns to face the young Black boy with a look of extreme disapproval.
The world is a ghetto and I don’t see it as unfortunate that you are a degenerate. You shouldn’t have been because you don’t belong. You’re just another nigger in America.
The floor of the gallows tree begins to collapse
[Boy blinks tears back as the haunting melody continues to play]
I fled reality and exiled here
Trapped in a system the youth of America fears
I’m in this world all alone
The only heartbeat I hear is my own
I don’t know where I am but I wonder…
if I was never good enough for you then…
tell me, am I good enough now…
(The music fades into nothingness)
This is but a few points that color the intention of a question that we’re often asked as prisoners. The question of fairness, justice for all underneath the seal of being an American and being blind towards discriminatory practices. Although the dialogue of what you just read may be shocking, understand that my situation is not unique as there are countless others dealing with the same shortcomings of a broken system.
Some may agree with me. Others surely won’t. My only intention is to highlight WHY MY EXPERIENCE is seen as unfair, biased and extremely racially motivated. The documents that were uncovered in my case, and the personal opinions of the State are the cornerstone for it.
And because of that, I could receive an EXECUTION DATE ANY DAY NOW.