AUTISM: A POEM
XIX. On Learning of Our Son's Illness
The only sound we hear is that warm afternoon
wind still sifting through the long arms of elms
everywhere around us. We watch as our son
runs alone across the grass, his figure silhouetted
now against sunshine slowly dying in the sky
behind him. Our own shadows are lengthening
along the lawn, drifting like little splotches
of cloud cover, spotty knots of shade blotting
bits of landscape in that late light—as always,
eventually seeming to link us with everything
we can see until nightfall once more gathers
all together in the false security of its embrace.
Even in such darkness, as the three of us return
home, fears of what might lie ahead never disappear.