The Abnormal Ones

Fri, 10/04/2013 - 06:13 -- Cat H.

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Don’t call him weird

You’ll crush him

Don’t call him “special”

He’ll be suspicious

Don’t baby him

Dumb it down, make it easier

He can see right through you

Even if he won’t say so

 

Most people don’t know how to talk to Buddy

His autism confuses them

How do you talk to a guy

6’4, 20, and thinks like a preteen

Who braves public transportation but has

trouble holding

conversation?

 

Some try

They try real hard

Others give up

And leave him alone

Some never even tried

 

Ensconced in his silence

Do they think he don’t notice?

Those who try and those who don’t

He knows them all

 

Words are a hard tongue to learn

Pictures were his first language

Colored pencils and gray shading show his ideas

To a world unable to understand his words

 

"My brain is broken," he tells me.

What is there to say?

“I can’t handle all the noise.”

“I’m sorry.”

“I just want to be alone.”

 

I was angry

I wanted to fix it

 

Then a new thought:

Is he the abnormal one

                                                            Or are we?

 

Are we weird ‘cause we can't understand him?

Or ‘cause we’re inflexible?

Unyielding?

Formal?

 

Are we “special” because we conform everyone to be like us?

Have we forgotten how to welcome the “oddballs”?

Have we become an exclusive society

Where only the normals get in?

 

Comments

Cat H.

This poem was inspired by my experiences with my younger brother, a talented, gentle guy who's one of my best friends and who also has autism. This one's for you, kiddo.

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