AUTISM: A POEM

This blog has been created as an open experiment of poetry composition, perhaps a glimpse at an emerging manuscript as it matures. This working manuscript should not be considered as complete or published. Instead, this should be viewed as merely an early stage in the process of creation.

I have placed below some of the pages from an isolated venture in one of my typescript loose-leaf folders. The contents here represent portions of an ongoing personal project with a particularly narrow focus intended to eventually develop toward a book-length poetry sequence with the tentative working title of
Autism.

The poem will grow as new sections are added. The individual posts are designed so that they may be viewed as independent items; however, I have consciously carried themes, images, and similar language through the extended sequence with the hope that connectivity and continuity will be preserved among numerous sections of the long poem.

Readers are asked to regard this piece as a work in progress, a partial or rough draft rather than a finished product (even if some selected segments previously may have appeared in print), and I request everyone realize various edits, emendations, or expansion may be made to the posts at any time in the future. Moreover, at some point the entire sequence will be removed to undergo a complete revision.

Therefore, I urge visitors to become followers of the blog by clicking the link in the sidebar, as well as to follow on Twitter for updates. Readers are also invited to browse my personal web site for additional information.

Indeed, a significant part of this experiment involves a certain amount of transparency that includes the possibility for readers to communicate responses and offer constructive suggestions, both of which I welcome through post comments or e-mail messages.


Also, I advise that the order of the numbered sections is not meant to be at all definitive since the long poem’s sequence will certainly be reorganized as the work in this temporary format starts to resemble a completed manuscript and begins to assume a more formal shape that might eventually be suitable for publication. In fact, I welcome interest from book publishers as well.

Thank you for taking the time to examine this trial stage, a test which I perceive as a preliminary process in the composition of a possible poetry manuscript. —Edward Byrne

Friday, June 11, 2010

AUTISM: A POEM


. . . . . I. Summer Storm

Tonight, a summer storm brightens the sky,
. . . . . striking with its quickly lit filaments of lightning

and moving through like that late freight train
. . . . . traveling toward an early morning rendezvous

at a transfer station somewhere north of here,
. . . . . barely beyond the state line. My son wakens, shaken

by the sudden thunder, the longer jutting limbs
. . . . . of an old oak weighted with wet leaves scraping

against the vinyl siding running just underneath
. . . . . the eaves. Already, a frustrated search for speech,

each word lost like the black surface of that little
. . . . . lake now hidden behind his shut window shades.

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