In 1996, 16-year-old Reginald Dwayne Betts was sentenced to nine years in prison for a carjacking. He spent much of that time reading, and eventually writing. After prison, he went to Yale Law School and published a memoir and three books of poems. But he’s still wrestling with what “after prison” means. This is a conversation about incarceration, Blackness, and the weight of history, both political and personal. Betts’s most recent collection of poems is Felon.
This episode was originally released in January 2020.