Archive for cell mate

Free Bunny… Christine McDonald

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Christine "Clarity" McDonald with tags , , , on April 4, 2020 by paulthepoke

Most folks on camp called me by my street name, Ellie, instead of Christine. With my high–country Oklahoma twang and long, blond hair, “Ellie” seemed like a fitting nickname. A nickname was a little less personal on the streets and in prison, so I was good with that. Somehow having folks call you by a pseudonym helped you disassociate from what you were doing, from experiences you were enduring, and from who you really were deep inside. It was one of the ways we protected our deepest, innermost selves.

Anyway, the white shirt had us searched. “Where’s the critter, Ellie?” There were a couple of officers there, so we knew we were totally caught. As they pulled our lockers out, the white shirt said, “I have no idea how you guys kept this thing hidden, but it’s going.”

CeeCee cried. I was shocked she had such a soft side most did not know about. I was even more shocked she allowed these officers to see her emotional attachment to the bunny, but I knew the secrets that CeeCee carried; I knew the weight of the cross she lived with daily. I had tears in my eyes, but I tried to maintain an appearance of indifference so they wouldn’t see they had taken our joy along with the rabbit.

Bunny had become quite tame. How on earth was he to survive outdoors? It was fixing to rain. The white shirt was on the radio calling for someone to come and get the rabbit, and we were getting a prison violation. CeeCee was overcome with tears after I said Bunny couldn’t make it in the wild.

The white shirt said, “That’s not my problem. You should have thought about that before you took it out of its habitat.”

I explained that the rabbit would have been killed by the mower.

“That’s life,” said the white shirt. “That’s how things work.”

CeeCee asked if she could please at least walk our Bunny to the fence with a guard and let him go, so that he might have a chance to survive without being killed by our prison grass mowers. No one spoke. Then, as we exchanged glances and waited for an answer, the white shirt radioed and said, “Disregard.” It was still open yard time for the rest of the prison; only our housing unit was on lockdown. The white shirt said, “Get your bunny.”

CeeCee and I both started to walk out, but the guard said, “Just one of you walks that bunny to the fence.” Then she said, “And don’t make a scene.”

CeeCee, being generally more calm and laid back than me, was surely the better choice. I saw the tears she shed in front of the officers, and I knew she needed to set the bunny free for her own peace of mind. Although I was attached as well, I knew I’d be okay. She let Bunny go. There were houses with children within sight of the prison yard, so we hoped for the best for our bunny…

To be continued…

Contact Information:
Christine C. McDonald
636-487-8986
Christine.CryPurple@gmail.com

“Love your neighbor, all of ’em.” -Christine Clarity McDonald

https://crypurplemovie.com/

Our Friend Bunny… Christine McDonald

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Christine "Clarity" McDonald with tags , , , , , on March 28, 2020 by paulthepoke

CeeCee and I were the same age. From time to time, we looked out for each other on the corner of Gladstone Boulevard and Independence Avenue. We would often hang together in between dates, neither of us having a place to call home or a place to go inside, away from the elements. Once, we were arrested in a sting and transported together to the police station.

CeeCee had been in California for years working the streets of L.A., but she bounced back and forth to Kansas City, as that is where her family lived. She hoped that one day her family could look beyond the shame they felt for her prostitution. She longed for reconciliation with them.

At one point, CeeCee and I were in prison together, so we put our names on the list to be cellmates. Soon we were sharing a cell in an old prison that had crank windows we were allowed to open. And there was grass we were allowed to walk on. It was great.

Most other prisons wouldn’t allow you to open windows or walk on the grass. In fact, it was a conduct violation to walk on the grass, and the windows—well, they didn’t open.

One day, when the grass was being cut, the yard crew discovered some baby bunnies. The bunnies were a ray of hope to so many women in prison, many with families or hopes for families, many who had children who had been taken from them, many with families that had, like CeeCee’s, disconnected from them due to their incarceration and the shame it brought on the family. The bunnies somehow filled in the wells of hurt and loneliness. They gave us the connection of something to love and to care for.

CeeCee and I chose to adopt one. We had other girls who worked in the chow hall steal food for us. We cleaned out a metal footlocker and lined it with an old towel and grass we’d picked. At night when we were on lockdown, we would take out our bunny (which we had named simply “Bunny”) and hold it. During the day, we would go out to what we called Blubber Beach. It was where we girls could touch the grass and lie and bake in the sun—still in our prison–gray uniforms, but nevertheless enjoying the grass and the warmth of the sun. When we were there, we would take Bunny out. We stashed him between our breasts to get him out of the housing units. We would lie in the grass and watch Bunny enjoy it with us.

Soon, however, Bunny got bigger and needed to get out of the little locker we had made his home. At first, we had put a rolled–up towel across the floor at the door of the cell to insure that Bunny didn’t make it underneath. But as Bunny got bigger, it grew harder to keep him a secret.

CeeCee and I took turns. We worked different shifts in the prison, so it was easy for us to keep our soft, furry friend to ourselves. But Bunny grew, as all babies do, and we could no longer hide him in our bras to go outdoors. As time went on, we were leaving Bunny out to explore our prison cell more frequently. So the word got out that we had a pet baby rabbit in the state penitentiary, one we had kept and had taken care of for a couple of months. One of the girls told a white shirt, and our housing unit was put on lockdown. The white shirt came to our cell after the unit was locked down…

To be continued…

Contact Information:
Christine C. McDonald
636-487-8986
Christine.CryPurple@gmail.com

“Love your neighbor, all of ’em.” -Christine Clarity McDonald

https://crypurplemovie.com/

Paul the Poke

Habakkuk 1:5 Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told. -LORD God

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