Browning Unit


There is a man who comes every Sunday

He seems so happy while we all wait for it to be time

He is friendly with some of the other visitors, as if greeting old friends

All the guards know him and greet him

I am usually withdrawn, and do not talk much to others

The only thing I can think about is getting to see HIM

I can only think about how fast two hours can go by

Not one of us would choose to be there, if there was any other way

Visitors are mostly women, sometimes with small children

On my first visit, this man was there

He has been there every Sunday

I have slowly gotten to know some of the stories behind regular faces

I listen and I observe

I keep quiet though, and don’t offer much up

There are certain unspoken rules for visitors

Don’t ask questions about who they are visiting

Don’t ask how much time they have left

Don’t ask questions about how long they have been there

When information is volunteered, be respectful

This week, I was really early, and so was the man

This week he broke the rule and asked me who I was visiting

This week he told me his son was on Death Row.


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