A Letter from Down South

May 22,2009
Talia's Blog
Talia Rivera( )

Talia Rivera is a 33-year-old mother of two. As Executive Director of Villages without Walls, she works with high-risk gang members in Boston. [Read more]

I excitedly ripped open the envelope. “Hey T, what it do,” he wrote. He is craving Boston like a pregnant woman craves chocolate chip ice cream. “I wish I had a Boston Herald or Globe,” he said. “I’m so out of touch with the city, it’s crazy.” Earlier this year, I sat in a Federal Court House beside his mother, sister, and girlfriend, praying that the judge would extend mercy. We were looking for the kind of mercy that God gives us everyday. Even though we snub Him, He still loves us enough to let us try again the next day. “I’m good. Playing a lotta basketball, softball, pool, chess, working out, working in the kitchen from 4 a.m. to 1 p.m. and going to school.” I met him while he was incarcerated at a local jail. He was charged with being in possession of a Colt Combat Commander 45-caliber Series-0 semi-automatic pistol loaded with eight rounds of ammunition. This was after he had been convicted of a felony. We sat in a small room with white walls, three chairs, a table, and a telephone. It looked like the interrogation rooms we see in movies. “We need your help,” we said. “We want to broker a truce between two gangs.” One with which he was affiliated. At age 21 he is now serving a 72-month sentence in a federal corrections complex in Petersburg, Virginia. “They got ya boy down in Virginia with all these country folk! I miss up north so much,” he wrote. “Just wanted to touch base with you, see how you were, and let you know that I’m good. I love you Talia.”
Tags