My Brother’s Keeper

My name is Autism.
Some call me a disorder, but I’m not a disease.
I’m more like, another person inside you. …
Don’t ask why I chose you-you don’t need to know.
In return for living here,
I’ll build you a fantasy world;
Sights and sounds of your own choosing.
I’ll give you amazing talents.
You can sketch New York City in minutes,
Remember every line from every movie you’ve ever seen,
Count and add numbers faster than anyone else.
You’ll be a genius, an artist, a savant,
While I’m living in your head.
Sometimes, I’m afraid, I’ll get in the way.
There’s only so much room in here after all.
My shadow will lurk behind your eyes
So people will never be able to understand you.
You’ll want to talk to them but can’t,
Because I’m crowding your speech.
You won’t be able to explain why the hands that draw New York City
Can’t tie your own shoelaces,
Or why you feel the need to pace back and forth.
You won’t be able to say, “I love you, mom.” Or,
“Let’s play ball, Dad!” But don’t worry,
my shadow in your eyes
Will keep you from seeing your family’s pain.
And what are people anyway?
You have your fantasy world.

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