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A Mother’s Cry By Erica Miller

erica-millerI pray that my experiences in life may help those in need with a son or daughter who is incarcerated. It has been a battle within me to grow into the reality of the many trials, experiences, and tribulations I have overcome. My son, Eryc, was born with two strikes against him. One, he is an African-American, and two, he is a man. Today, he resides in Sheridan Correctional Center facing a six-year sentence.

With two felonies and very little education, Eryc has fallen through the societal cracks. He is being characterized and judged by his crimes and identified by a number the institution provided him with. His given name no longer exists in that cage he dwells in. Now, I am not looking for sympathy—I have a story to tell and I think you all should listen. People make mistakes; the key is to learn from them. Our children are the future. We need them the way they need us. When I look at Eryc, I don’t see a felon or a number—I see my child. Sometimes I feel alone, and struggle to hold him up. I need him to be able to understand that he is not a caged animal, but a man; a strong man who can stand firm.

Many women have lost their children to imprisonment. Many of us have buried them to gun violence. It’s a feeling no mother will ever be prepared for. I will never forget the look of fear in my child’s eye the day he was sentenced. It was unbearable as I knew there was nothing I could do. I felt helpless.

Even though my son is in a bad place right now, outside of those walls there are worse things happening. At least he is alive. For this reason alone, I feel that God has spared his life. I won’t question Him for I know he will never give me more than I can handle. I will overcome every milestone put in front of me and instead of being a statistic; I will be a helping hand.

A Mother’s Devotion

This poem is dedicated to Eryc D. Funches

I carried you inside of me for 9 months, my special bundle of joy.

One of the happiest moments was when the doctor announced, “Ms. Miller, meet your baby boy.”

Mom always wanted to guide you in the right way,

Redirecting you when you make a mistake.

Oh, God watch over him for my soul.

Can’t bear to be another mother with a heartbreak.

As head of the household, dealing with your sisters, Mom had a lot to carry on her shoulders.

Bringing children up nowadays has been a struggle,

Especially with society growing colder.

I will never give up hope,

I stay armored up for I know destruction is near.

I could never imagine myself as a prison mom,

A mother’s worst fear.

Failure is not an option,

Where did this hate stem from?

They sentenced you to six years, now your presence is gone.

I pray to you my heavenly father, keep my son healthy, teach him obedience, allow him to stay strong.

God, with you all things are possible, he will never be alone.

Soon this too, shall pass, my son will not be left astray.

I need you to understand your mother’s devotion will never go away.

No number can define who you are,

You were born to be a star

Erica Miller