“Phone Sox” by Matthew Feeney

Matthew Feeney


I watched in confused amazement as the
inmate carefully slipped a sock over his phone
like a giant cotton condom
before placing the bone phone up to his ear.
My first thought was he was
merely using protection
before some steamy phone sex
with his baby mama.
But then my awareness widened
and I observed multiple guys
talking into the heels of their
gym socks.
Then I realized they were trying to
protect themselves
from germs.
Since germs can’t jump
and I don’t lick my phone
I chose not to use a sock.
Which is probably for the best
since most of my socks have holes in ’em.

from Rattle #76, Summer 2022
Tribute to Prisoner Express


Matthew Feeney: “Writing keeps me sane in an insane environment and produces hope when facing an indeterminate sentence. Who knew that attending a workshop in 2017 run by the Minnesota Prison Writing Program would change my life? I was assigned amazing volunteer writing mentors whose insight and support have kept me inspired during my long literary journey. I was originally content to be known as a prison writer, but now I’m slowly maturing into a writer who just happens to be in prison. I’d like to dedicate this to my Mom and Dad—love, always and forever!”

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