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Anger, My Secret Love Affair

tlm icon-1By Damon Cooke

San Quentin State Prison


It all began when I was a young boy,

About 7 or 8, full of joy.

Harassing and bullying to no end,

Rocks, oranges, and the occasional can, made of tin.

Coming home each day from school became an adventure,

Ducking, dodging, trying not to become a pre-teen with dentures.

Then one day it all started to change,

I came home bloody, beaten, and deranged.

My grandmother saw me trying to hide,

Addressing my sobbing by telling me, “Go back outside, face your fears, look those boys square in the eye.

Find their soul and make that your battle cry,

But under no circumstance will you come back inside.”

Slowly I found the courage to seek out that brut,

He was right on my front lawn, with twenty others to boot.

This was the start of my internal demise,

I took a deep breath, clinched my fist and struck him right between the eyes.

He fell quickly, as I ruptured his skin,

And at that moment, that’s when I felt that Secret Love Affair begin.

She possessed my body like an Evil Spirit,

Calling out my name, with that sweet seductive tone, I tried desperately not to hear it.

As my eyes opened, I searched eagerly for that hypnotic voice,

Knowing at that very moment I needed to make a choice.

Do I follow my conscious mind and reject that simple ploy?

Or do I give into temptation and feel my soul get destroyed.

I tossed and turned with that quagmire pulsating in my chest,

Knowing the entire time, I’m faced with the ultimate test.

Love and Lust have been around since Eve and Adam,

But never has it reached a level I could not fathom.

Day after day, this love affair grew,

finally it reached a point of volatility that nobody else knew.

I need you baby in order to survive this cruel world full of pain,

If I can’t consummate this feeling, I’m left with utter disdain.

Stay in my life Anger, please don’t go away!

Soon we’ll be together and hopefully married someday.

She said, “I can’t marry you, look what you’ve done?

Your warped love for me caused you to pick up a gun.”

“Now look at you in prison, nowhere else to run,

I guess I’m just left alone out here rotting in the sun.”

Anger…Anger…don’t leave me this way!

What can I do to make you stay?

“Nothing,” she said, “finally you’ve faced your fears,

Now it’s time for me to move on after all these years.”

You mean you don’t love me like I do you?

“No, I never did, our time is through!”

Wow! What is left for me to say?

She replied, “Your maturation brought about this day.”

Are you saying I’ve grown up after all these years?

“Yes, I am, you’ve conquered your fears…”


All communications between inmates and external channels are facilitated by approved volunteers since inmates do not have access to the internet. This program is part of The Last Mile San Quentin. Twitter:  @TLM

  • jimmy

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Michele Thomas

    heartfelt and awesome. thank you!

  • Lissette

    I have a brother who is in prison. I am filled with compassion for you, and sorry that anger consumed you from such an early age. But, I am very glad for you that the anger is gone! Thank you for sharing, and continue your work.

  • Sara leach

    Thank you. Feels strange reading something written in prison so far away. My son is in prison here in the uk and I don’t think he has Admitted his anger

  • Torria Driver

    Wow! Amazing and eye opening!

  • Tiffany Hollis

    It begins very very young I have noticed with people. So many can relate. You are not a lone. Share this with schools! You can touch them better than the rest of us.

  • ray

    thanks for having the courage to write about your anger. you are an inspiration and i have faith in you. keep growing and keep believing in yourself! you’ll get thru this.

  • Tracie

    The first step to moving forward is taking responsibility for all the steps we took backwards. Thanks for sharing.