INMATES & MUSIC

Making Do With What You Have by Matthew Epperson

I have a guitar in here. It’s cheap, but it’s a blessing to be able to have one. It has a little tuner on top and a cut-away so I can lead high on the fret board. It’s not bad, but it’s still a cheap 100 guitar, and I burn the strings up on that thing! A couple of other guys and myself will get together in our bullpen area on various nights and jam. It’s the greatest escape a man can have, jamming. We typically generate a small crowd that sings along with us. Often some of the older cats who’ve been down for a long time will approach us and say, “Man, you don’t know what it means to hear music like that. Y’all keep it up.” It’s nice to hear the impact we have on people, and it brings me a lot of joy to know that I’m apart of helping someone’s time go by faster.

We don’t have much to do in here. I’m fortunate enough to own a guitar and aspirations of being a writer, but there are a bunch of people doing hard time because of boredom. Some of them turn to the litany of things that get them into trouble. Others are like me, and are doing things on their own voalition to become a better person. Still, others are simply too old to get motivated for a better tomorrow, and too tired to get into trouble. These guy’s live with the devil Boredom on their backs. So, when we fire up these junky guitars in a campfire like setting around our picnic tables, I myself take note of the foot tapping, hand clapping, singing, and heck, even dancing. We are turning a horrible experience upside-down, on it’s head. We are making do with what we have.

I hope you all take time to make the best of your situation and look for the finer things in this chapter of your life.

Go see something live!

Matthew Epperson
DOC #284812

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