Franklin Co. inmate expresses addiction recovery through poetry

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FRANKLIN COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) – Jon Borel began writing poetry after being arrested nine months ago for burglary and resisting arrest.

“Living in constant denial believing I had all the answers, enjoying meth disasters because it stole my life like cancer,” read Borel in his poem “Save Yourself.”

It was his 13-year methamphetamine addiction that landed him behind bars in Franklin County Jail.

This arrest became a turning point for him, he said he was at his lowest at 44 years old.

“These drugs will literally take your life. They might not kill you, but you will want to be dead,” Borel said.

For the past five months, he has participated in the prison’s Fresh Start program.

Poetry was an outlet for Borel for 20 years, but it wasn’t until he spent time in prison that he began to use the tool to overcome denial about his drug addiction.

He then saw how his words could influence other people.

“Trying to be a positive influence and a role model now for anyone who wants and wants to make change,” Borel said. “The hardest part for me was realizing I had a problem, so I started expressing myself through my poetry and that’s a much easier way to bring it out.”

He says the 12-step program and a new faith helped him.

“You have to be ready to change yourself, that’s the only way to change yourself,” Borel said. “Now these programs can give you structure and help you move through your changes, but you still have to be ready to make that change. And Rock Bottom did it for me. I have nothing there, I I have nothing to go to I am 44 years old I need to build my life from scratch I almost wanted to believe it was too late.

Methamphetamine stole everything from Borel, he accepted his decisions and now hopes his poetry will inspire change.

“Because I know I will never beat him alone. It robbed me of all meaning and left me without a home,” Borel read in his poem titled “Save Yourself.”

” I do not have anything. There’s nothing else you can do to me right now,” Borel said. “I have no home, I have no family, I have no children.”

Her poem “Change” was published by a prison ministry called “Joy Through The Stamp Ministries”.

“It’s impossible to get everyone off the streets, but it’s not impossible for people to start making a change, and I feel like if one person stands up if one in 100 people stands up and takes this step which already makes a change”, says Borelle.

Borel said he has made peace with his incarceration and wants to continue growing stronger and mentoring others before his release.

“I hope hearing this, from the people who hear this poem, will trigger something in them to make them want to write their own poetry about their addictions or empower them to fight their addictions.”

Borel has not yet been sentenced but hopes to be enrolled in the rehabilitation program.

Once out of prison, he hopes to tell his life story and prevent others from making the same mistakes he did.

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