To Denton, From Richard Haskins

Dear Denton,

It looks like I'll be surviving prison despite the best efforts of the state of Texas. My last five months have been spent in various cages with the most violent, ignorant, racist, homophobic, misogynistic lunatics on the planet. It's amazing you were able to elect Donald Trump with what seems to be the bulk of his supporters locked in here with me. Yeah...it's that bad here.

Thankfully, I have had mad support to get me through it. Most particularly from Leah McKinney who absolutely busted her ass to make sure I got through this nightmare. A complete list of her efforts during the year I've been behind bars would be miles long, but I will say that when I was in tears and didn't think I could keep going she was always there to pick me up and I will love her forever for it. Ed Steele, Anne Sullivan, Hale Baskin, Colin Campbell, Tom Cochran, Patricia Zepeda, and Robert Hokamp also provided invaluable support to ensure my survival, along with my father and step mother.

I dream all day every day about coming back home to Denton, kissing my son Viggo, leaving hickeys all over Leah, and playing music with all of my friends which is exactly what I plan to do. I've written three albums and two books since I've been locked up and you can bet they will all be coming out this summer along with tons of shows, spoken word dates, and plans for an art showing (thank you, Leah, for being my booking agent). I'll also be recording lots of bands and mastering lots of hip hop records at Valley of the Kings in Dallas.

I won't waste another second of my life and I encourage you to not waste another second of yours. Our days are numbered like the hairs on our head, and losing even one by being away from the people you love is too many. I suppose one of the things I've learned over the last year is how strong I can be when I have to. That and who my friends really are. Thank you for all the love and support. I'll be home in a few weeks.

-Richard Haskins

The Return of Richard Haskins, a release party, will take place at Killer's Tacos on April 7, 2017. with The Richard Haskins Band and special guests.

Photos courtesy of Leah McKinney
Header image from the first draft of Richard's letter