The assistant can hardly see me. She waves pointing towards the bread 'Did you want the loaf sliced?' I nod, becoming aware of people queuing behind me, and quickly add 'And can I have two of these cakes please?’ ‘These are not cakes, they are gateaux’, she says. I shake my head in assent but I dare not point to the tempting curly pastry with shiny raisins in it. She’ll perhaps say that it isn’t a snail but an escargot. The next day if I wanted to buy an umbrella, would I call it a parasol or a parapluie?
Communication was difficult
due to lack of facilities in a prison.
Prisoners were sometimes refused
pen, paper or envelopes.
Some of the duty officers could be punitive
or unwilling to act.
In the education centre, tutors often worked around that:
pulled out pages, force- scribbled pens,
Student prisoners sometimes came back with
other times with a letter for which they needed
They said they could buy stamps but the shop had
Last night my dream became
a prison administrator’s nightmare.
a gross of envelopes.
Every prisoner who wanted could send letters!