ISSUE THREE: Alertly Messy | next poem →

My Uncle at Nineteen

          According to a Physician, Psychologist,
          Parole Agent and Reform Center
          Supervisor at the St. Cloud Reformatory for Men

Kelly Nelson

A youth. A wise guy. Unrealistic thinking but no bizarre ideas.
Talks of himself as an ex-convict, thinks life is a big joke. Throat—
normal. Tobacco use—yes. Tall, slim, some spark of ability to relate
to people. Said, "No more time will do me no good."

Rather unattractive, rationalizes freely, poor clerical aptitude.
Presents quite a negative picture but does not seem completely
hopeless. No physical complaints or handicaps. No job preference.
Never been able to associate closely with a stable, adult male.

Mouth—normal. Liquor use—yes. Knew at the time that fights
were against the rules of probation: "This guy was asking for a
fight and I worked him over good." If continued in this institution,
he might very well become bitter and paranoid.

Heart tones—normal. Grade level 10. Feelings of remorse donít last
very long. Even under a penitentiary setting does not conform to
rules. Ears—normal. Extremities—normal. Denies having sexual
relations with the 16-year-old girl he stayed with in a motel.

Did not go to church after he was confirmed. Bright normal
intelligence. Admits he is guilty. Alias: Dizzy. Any help would
have to be a long-term, close relationship with an accepting adult
male—there is no possibility for such treatment here.

Kelly Nelson is the author of the chapbook Rivers I Donít Live By (Concrete Wolf Press, 2014). Her poems published here were created from her uncleís 500-page prison record and are part of a book-length found poetry project supported by the Arizona Commission on the Arts. Her found poetry has also appeared in Verbatim, Found Poetry Review and NonBinary Review. She teaches Interdisciplinary Studies at Arizona State University.

ISSUE THREE: Alertly Messy | next poem →











ISSUE THREE: Alertly Messy

Kelly Nelson
   My Uncle at Nineteen
   His Mother Writes
      the Warden, 1955

Jon-Michael Frank
   Funny How Time Slips Away
   Not Fade Away

Jacqueline Jules
   Obsolete Angers

J. Bradley
   Yelp Review:
     Planned Parenthood
    of Greater Orlando

   Yelp Review:
     The Milk Bar

Amy Schriebman Walter
   Hope in a Yellow Dress

Miho Kinnas
   Earlobes

Mark Povinelli
   Notes I
   Notes II

Kenneth Nichols
   The Best Writers
     Bombed the SAT

John Patsynski
   The Money Weapon

Aileen Bassis
   Pellucid Musing

Travis Macdonald
   When the Map's Crease
      Becomes an Axis
      and Detaches

Kris Hall
   Pyromanian I
   Pyromanian II

Claire Scott
   Harbor Lights

Elizabeth Kate Switaj
   Poseidon's Canto