Poems about autism

Dinah Murray 1946-2021

Dr Dinah Murray

A nature lover, mushroom finder,
activist and fighter
against oppression, for our future,
thinker, speaker, writer

Always radical, always left,
sometime Green and Labour,
A friend, a comrade, partner, mum,
a new-found Scottish neighbour

An organiser, platform builder,
amplifier of others
There's light at the end of the attention tunnel
thanks to your endeavours

Opinionated

gagged face

You expressed your opinion.

In response, I expressed my opinion,
which was different from your opinion

In response to me expressing an opinion
different from your opinion

You shouted
I'M ENTITLED TO EXPRESS MY OPINION!

as though by expressing an opinion
at variance with your opinion

I had been denying your right to express your opinion
which, of course, I hadn't.

Your Place

Joe at his flat

Last year, I wrote a poem (a pantoum) called 'This Place' about visiting my son in the adolescent psychiatric unit where he spent four months (read it here).

He now has his own flat, living independently with support. So I decided to write a follow-up poem of the same length in the same style, hoping that this will illustrate the wonderful progression.

This Place

I come to see you in this place
A train, a bus, a longish walk
A mask of growth veneers your face
We picnic, catch up, laugh and talk

A train, a bus, a longish walk
They brought you here to make you well
We picnic, catch up, laugh and talk
You've questions, jokes and tales to tell

Why can't you just be normal?

Autistic screeching

Why do you like that tuneless music?
Wear your hair the way you choose it?
I think you get it it, then you lose it
Why can’t you just be normal?

Can’t you make yourself conform?
Do anything that’s near the norm?
Don’t you know there’s a uniform?
Why can’t you just be normal?

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