[Readings] Signed, Sealed, Deliverance | Harper's Magazine
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April 2003 Issue [Readings]

Signed, Sealed, Deliverance


The following letter, written in summer 2002 by Wasatch County Jail inmate Kent Coulson, was intended for Coulson’s girlfriend but was accidentally sent to David Sam, his sentencing judge. Coulson was sentenced to seventy months in federal prison for manufacturing methamphetamines.

Hey Baby,

How is my little thing? I have been sweating my ass off. It is a hot one in here. As you know, I have not been sentenced yet, but that is coming up soon. But I do have some good news concerning that subject. Can you believe my father plays golf with Sam, the crusty old judge who happens to be mine, not by choice? Ha!

Not only that, but the old dumbfucker lives up here in Heber somewhere and the church people who come every Sunday morning just happen to know him. So it all looks good for me. Ha! Ha!

I just thought I would send a quick note to you and let you know what’s up. I have to write a suck-up letter to the Honorable Asshole and it should all be great for me.

Your big guy,