Glen, Isabel and Matt are currently enduring their fifth day of incarceration after barricading themselves inside the Keystone XL pipeline. Help get them out with a donation to their legal fund.
In the meantime, we’ve been writing them letters to make sure they know that they’re not forgotten. Time has a way of passing very slowly in jail – a few words of encouragement can be a huge help.
Write your own! Isabel has been moved to a different jail, so there are two different addresses:
Inmate’s Full Name (1 per letter: Matt Almonte, or Glen Collins)
C/O Smith County Jail
206 E. Elm
Tyler, Texas 75701
*Note: Letters cannot exceed 12” by 15”. Return address with full name is required. Be mindful that the authorities will likely read your letter. Keep it positive and avoid inflammatory language – otherwise it might not be delivered. As a general rule: if in doubt, leave it out.
To write to Isabel, address to:
PO Box 849
Kaufman, TX 75142
If you need inspiration, here are a few of the letters that we’ve sent already:
I know you’re stuck in jail at the moment, and that really sucks. But Martin Luther King Jr. said that jail is a Baptism, teaching you first hand about the way things are, inducting you into a noble tradition of Resistance. Way to start off a lifetime of Resistance so young. Way to stay strong and smart. You are aware and eloquent, and you can do a ton of good where you’re at.
Keep it wild,
I want to let you know how inspired I am by you, and that I miss having you here lots. Not just because potatoes have been consistently under-cooked without you. Please accept all the solid vibes we’re sending you and don’t be too sad. We’re all being elevated by your perseverance in this.
But yeah, all the animals here at the zoo are missin’ u hard and we’re gonna keep fighting to get y’all out and to spark blockades everywhere!
You rocked it! Stay strong in there. I know from experience that jail is dehumanizing and boring and deeply depressing, and I hope this letter helps, and I hope that you get lots of other letters too. Some things I learned during my very brief time in jail for protesting KXL:
Talk to your cell mates. They probably have some great stories to tell, and they’ll know plenty of tricks to make prison a bit more bearable. Do jail-yoga (that helped me sooo much) even if people look at you funny. Make the jail give you paper and draw something beautiful to decorate your bunk – I know you’re a great artist. Get books if there’s a library, even if they aren’t very good books. Meditate! Focus, breath by breath, on the present moment, and imagine the whole Earth spinning beneath you.
It seems like a long time now, but once you emerge free into the sunlight, it will all fade like a bad dream on a summer morning.
Also, here’s a poem I wrote:
It is time to seek greener, wetter shores,
to find new, unrealized realities,
to build a home free of the violence
we visit upon each other in the name of fear
It is time to refute the legacy of control
which spreads through our collective memory
like lightning arcing fractals through the sky,
like blood staining our dreams.
It cannot live forever. That much is obvious now.
As it sputters and begins to fail,
we will find our ancient selves awakened
with new wisdom from long and dark remembrances
inside blind prisons,
long years apart from the sun
but never separate.
We find in the slow and subtle logic of growing things
a knowledge of time as nothing but the imagined counting of breaths,
of the world rippling out from each center
like a hot monsoon of windswept pollen,
filling the streets,
wafting into windows.
We all love you so much, stay strong and we’ll see you very soon!