This is the first of many interviews with our incarcerated brothers and sisters. August interviews Tom S., a brilliant essayist and artist, who also happens to be serving a life sentence.

Take a moment to really study the pictures of Tom’s Bugs. Believe it or not, these are made using the following tools (and nothing else): plastic utensils, a razor, a lighter, and a Sharpie. That’s it! The other two pieces are cut paper—that is, paper painstakingly cut and layered. Tom is in his mid-50s and he has been inside for a *long* time. In my opinion, he’s one of the smartest people you’ll ever meet; in class, he often nails a point during discussion—always with great aplomb. My sense is that everybody who knows him learns something from him. To hear more about our class discussions, check out my conversation with AJ in episode 5.

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