A Forsaken Soul

So, like every other time in the past that my mind has run wild, I take a deep breath and try to bring under control the activity in my mind that is threatening to break through the defensive wall that I have constructed for my protection. I stare up at the ceiling of my very small home and concentrate on the sounds that surround me. Unconsciously, like all the other times in the past when I have concentrated on the night sounds, my mind takes me back to a better place, a safer place.

I hear the jingle of Lucky’s collar as he walks through my family’s home late one night, doing a family dog’s job of making sure that all this world’s dangers are kept out, when, in reality, I am hearing a ring of keys that are hanging from a guard’s belt, bumping against his leg as he patrols the corridors, keeping danger in, not out. I am comforted by the familiar sound of my father’s snoring coming from my parents’ room when, in reality, I am blocking out the sound of fifty different snores in order to focus on one. Fifty other’s snoring so loudly that it would seem impossible that they could sleep through their own noise. Speakers in their sleep, caught up in a nightmare continuing from the day before, are substituted with the innocent rambling of my brother who is sleeping fitfully in the bed right next to my own.

What would you do to survive? Convicted of a felony crime, teenager Mike Crawford finds himself in the dark and brutal world of prison life, a world where a caring and compassionate young man is haunted by the memories of life outside and hunted by the predators inside. In learning just what it takes to survive, he awakens the demons lying within. A Forsaken Soul, the debut short story by Michael Hoard, is a story about transformation that will leave you saddened and shocked.
Award Winning Author Michael Hoard grew up in Southern Louisiana where he attended the University of Southwestern Louisiana (Currently University of Louisiana at Lafayette) for two years as an Art Major. A 9 to 5 career in an office was completely forgotten when he got that first summer job working the back deck of a seismic survey boat on the Gulf of Mexico. He has remained in the oilfield and on the Gulf his entire adult life.

Richard rated it it was amazing
Brilliant and brutal!
This short story is written by a very special writer with the ability to transport the reader inside the lead character and I couldn't put it down.
I just wish it was longer; the best story I have read for many years. Everyone should read this.

ByJim Blackon October 1, 2017
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As someone whose former job it was to go into the prisons and county detention centers across my state, I've heard the "first day" and "first week" stories of the inmates. The character, Michael's sentiments expressed in the last few pages of the story are ones I've heard from inmates several times. This is a well-written story that gives good insight to one man's living, and surviving in prison. The message at the end rings true.

Bycdwolf3on March 1, 2017
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
Well written, touching, powerful story. It's insight into what happens to the soul when being locked up, so tragic. An intriguing story of a young man's transformation. This is a page turner.

ByKayla P Dugason September 17, 2016
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase
Such a powerful story. The author's words created such a clear picture, I could have been there. I didn't want it to end, and still don't. Please write a follow up story to this!