Moving past hostile classes

In 1988, after I performed Pozzo in Waiting for Godot before international audiences at San Quentin State Prison, my confidence and belief in myself as a poet, artist and human being rose and flowed with inspiration like a thawing creek in spring.  I wanted to share openly and freely whatever gifts I have as an artist and, hopefully, inspire others to share their gifts. 
I became a teacher’s aide.  I ran small writing, reading and acting groups in the 1990’s at Donovan State Prison and at California Men’s Colony Prison.  I remember going into hostile classrooms to recite poetry and Shakespeare and to read my published work.  A lot of the cats in the classrooms did not know what to make of me.  I could see who in the hell do he think he is in some faces.  When I introduced myself and told the class how long I had been in prison, some of their masks fell down. Some students.....read the full essay at tajaltspace.com

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