• 48888953_ml

    Self-Respect and Self-Awareness When Mentally Ill

    I am crazy, to use the politically incorrect term. I am prone to visions and voices. I am also a parent, an educator, and an artist. Every morning, I wake up, and the first thing I think is: Will I die today? But then I get up, and I go ...
  • 12997006_ml

    HOW BEING SOUTHERN TAUGHT ME TO BE KIND IN AN UNKIND WORLD

    There are things I learned growing up in Arkansas that have structured my entire life. I open doors for people. I say please and thank you. I use the words sir and ma’am. All of these things are little. But it is the little things that make it possible to ...
  • 8837771_ml

    POETRY, EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE, AND DISABLED YOUTH

    First, I am a poet. After that, I am a teacher. When I write, I write of people living on the edges of the mainstream. I write about disability. I write about poverty and disenfranchisement. I write about an invisible world. As a teacher, I work with disabled young people. ...
  • 12394129_ml

    THE COURAGE OF NONVIOLENCE

    Violence, in my family, is a kind of tradition. We tie integrity and honor and courage to the ability to wreak havoc in the world. When I was young, I learned to read people’s hands and shoulders. I learned to see the punch before it was thrown. I got older ...
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    THE DRIVE TO SERVICE

    I have this friend, a Jesuit, with whom I love to argue. One day, after reading about Sandy Hook, I asked why his god would allow such things. It was a childish question. I am not a Christian. I’d decided that if there were a god, he was at best ...
  • Bill (1)

    William L. Alton

    William was born November 5, 1969, and started writing in the eighties while incarcerated in a psychiatric prison. Since then his work has appeared in Main Channel Voices, World Audience, and Breadcrumb Scabs among others. In 2010, he was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He has published several books. One ...