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Art by Inti Gonzalez

This artwork was created by Inti Gonzalez, a youth leader at Youth Spirit Artworks, an interfaith job and training program for low-income and homeless young people in the San Francisco Bay Area. She made it to accompany Global Forum Online editorial liaison Joe Garcia’s essay, Incarcerated Insights into Incarceration, which was re-published on Street Spirit .

Inti said the following about the inspiration behind her work:

This article really resonated with me. For me and for many people I know, this pandemic is giving people a chance to sit with themselves, a chance for spiritual change.

Joe in a way compares his prison experience with the COVID-19 pandemic. For many people, including me, this situation may feel imprisoning, but this situation is giving many people is a chance to see, evaluate, and recognize whatever emotional prison they may be in. They are learning about themselves and who they are, which is giving people the wonderful gift of a chance to change and grow.

A new life is crawling up the bars inside you. The metal is corroding. Light is breaking through.

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Global Forum Online has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.

Inti Gonzalez is an artist and youth leader at Youth Spirit Artworks in Berkeley, California. Her work includes music — mainly singing, guitar and drums — and visual art. Gonzalez aims to become a music teacher and physical and emotional healer. She hopes to be a major part of her mother’s rehab healing center, the Jerry Garcia Family Clinic.