Ivie’s Gallery

Ivie’s Gallery

Artist Ivie, 55

Self-Forgiveness is a work in progress
It takes a strong person to stand and live
With the burden of a sin, a regret, a remorse and not hide
Learning to live with your faults before forgiving yourself
Will light your torch for the long haul
It’s in the very learning of our faults that we find freedom

Kristal, 29

Kristal, 29

Meet Kristal…

“I really want to be a couples and marriage counselor,
and let people know when you really love someone,
you don’t hurt them, ever for any reason.”

Incarcerated: 6 years

He convinced me to come to New York to meet his mom, she abandoned him when he was four. We went through a lot together. He said everything would change and I believed him. Everything started again.

I was far from my family, he was still in control, I couldn’t go to a safe place. I didn’t know anyone, I didn’t have another choice but to stay and hold everything down. I was still married to another guy. I was so ignorant that after I got married I left him because I wanted freedom to party and do what I wanted. One night we were in a big fight and my husband called. He really wanted me to come back and start over with him, it sounded crazy to me.

He knew this guy had put his hands on me over and over again. Why did he want me back, I questioned everything. I couldn’t go back to him. When I’m released I really want to be a couples and marriage counselor, and let people know when you really love someone, you don’t hurt them, ever for any reason.

Today I’m fighting to get re-sentenced. I have finished everything possible in this place so I can go home. I live to be with my family. 📸: Kristal’s personal collection

Lovette, 48

Lovette, 48

Incarcerated: 8 years

Housed: Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, New York

I am an inspiring writer who has been utterly transformed through my incarceration. I have gone from a victim mentality to victorious overcomer. I have suffered abandonment from my family to gaining a new family. I advocate for empowerment through my writing crusade and personal struggles. It’s not only helped myself but helped others. Through the blessing of this experience I’ve become stronger, more resilient and more motivated than ever before. Giving back has made  me a part of something larger than myself. Through my interactions and observations I feel I now have a means to impart change in the corrections department. I am thriving and the best part is I’m helping others thrive too. The joy of having persons express to me how my work has helped them hang in or lifted their spirits is the cherry on top of my beyond blessed incarcerated life.

BREAK THE CYCLE
In order to raise stronger men and women
We have to nurture. Protect and invest wisely in them.

Setting strong examples for the youth to follow-
Teaching them depth of character-Not being shallow.

The KEY is education and being a consistent, loving presence in their lives.
Ending GANG VIOLENCE. The senseless killing with guns and knives.

MENTORING THE YOUTH-showing them correctly right from wrong.
Instilling good work ethics so their rap sheets aren’t long.

Stressing the importance of a hard earned dollar-
Being pleased with the works of their own 2 hands—HOLLA!

Training a child up in the way they should go-
Disciplining them lovingly helps them to grow.

Our youth are the future – THE NEXT GENERATION
Responsibility and accountability 4 ALL
To improve this GREAT NATION!
IN A WORLD WHERE YOU CAN BE ANYTHING…
CHOOSE TO BE KIND!

TRIUMPHANT

Listen here now obstacles…
Though you seek to deter me
I’ll go over, around and through-
I refuse to be discouraged or shut down by you!

Struggles in life have made me skilled in navigation
Learning how to maneuver, regroup and move forward-
NOT being crippled by stagnation

Triumphant amid injustice, abuse and sorrow
Many times NOT even wanting to see tomorrow
My experiences made me who I am today
I trusted in My Savior to show my the way

What sought to DESTROY me
I thankfully persevered and overcame
FINALLY coming to a place of HEALING
My life JOYFULLY will NEVER be the same!

TO FORGIVE

FORGIVE as you have been forgiven-
Make amends while you are still living.

Don’t allow grudges to hold you back-
Bitterness causes you to go off track.

Allow love in your heart to let healing begin-
Harboring hatred is a most deadly sin.

Unforgiveness separates us from others-
We’re God’s children; sisters and brothers.

Do something nice for someone who’s hurt you
Show them kindness and mercy – at least try to.

It’s a difficult task but so worth your while-
Who knows-give it a shot to make them smile.

You may restore the relationship – if it was broken –
Granting their secret wish which was unspoken.

Break down the walls with prayer, kind acts and love
Apology gladly accepted – with blessings from above!

Ivie, 55

Ivie, 55

Meet Ivie…

It’s a whole lot easier to forgive others than to forgive oneself.

Housed: Bedford Hills, New York

I am incarcerated for the death of two human beings. But in my heart I carry the loss and taking of three lives. That’s been really hard. The  two men I’m in prison for  died because of me, and I am also carrying the guilt and shame for taking my younger brother’s life. A saint in my mother’s eyes. Her baby. A little angel who could do no wrong in her mind, and who sadly and unfortunately, is also my co-defendant. In her eyes, I could see the death of a thousand little cuts bleeding out her soul on the visiting room floor. I too died over and over again. He was only 17 years and will soon be 45.  It’s been pure agony alone learning to live with it all. No one should have died. Period. Can you fathom the difficulty in saying, I forgive myself? Am I not in touch with the truth of my divine nature for feeling the futility of self-forgiveness. The most difficult thing is learning to forgive myself. It’s a whole lot easier to forgive others than to forgive oneself.  I will be an unsung hero, humble when I capture self-forgiveness.

Self-Forgiveness is a work in progress

It takes a strong person to stand and live

With the burden of a sin, a regret, a remorse and not hide

Learning to live with your faults before forgiving yourself

Will light your torch for the long haul 

It’s in the very learning of our faults that we find freedom

It’s avoiding them that’s in deservance of no credence.

 

For me redemption is achieved by becoming stronger with taking 

Ownership of my responsibility and so, I aim at redemption

With passionate high hopes

Heartstrings of self-forgiveness will begin to unfold’

This still partially lost and struggling soul.

 

To the core of my entire being

In all truth where truth is true unfailingly

I do genuinely feel deeply sorry

For the faithfully departed

I drown inside of sorrow 

A river of tears through my veins once rotted

A Darwinian will save today and tomorrow 

To never again be unguarded

 

I know I’m a child of God

I know He’s in my life

Perhaps that’s why

I can still: live, laugh, and love

I still can’t say I forgive myself!

Being contrite with an innocent blindness

I seek love and kindness

 

I’m sure I’ll create a dent with

Self-forgiveness once he’s a free man

It’s all God’s plan

A written dealt hand

The purpose of my life is to use the fruit of my karma

As a bed of opportunity to pass the buck forward

And help those he puts in my path

I’m sorry mom won’t be able to see it

For she as well has gone off to the promised land

But heaven has eyes too

 

There’s a myriad of emotions here

The manifold of their feelings

Outline spiritual warfare

Still, love over fear

Is there a soul who really cares 

I seek  a stone thrower who cannot bear forgiving me

 

Hidden guilt festers, admission heals, the Salvation of a soul is the greatest victory imaginable

To love is to forgive, therefore tangible.

 

God created me to be “Love” 

In my heart, in my mind, in the still & tranquil

Core of my being, lies everything I have been

Seeking to remember a course in miracles.

Time is the present essence. 

If I could only turn back time

Periods that I could do over again

I’d turn back time.

Heaven sent

I repent.