Rising Dark

Rising Dark

Day 29 of 30 Days of Poetry

A pencil and acrylic sketch on paper of a girl sat looking dejected, arms around her knees and head down, in front of a lit candle with a glowing halo around the flame. Around her is darkness out of which are rising black nightmare figures
Across the fields they fly,
Fleet shadow wraiths unseen
By stolid human eye.

Yet keener souls divine:
Dogs bark a herald cry
Then cower with a whine.

Foul spirits of the night
Round my lost soul entwine,
All summoned to my plight.

The candle flame burns lean,
Its feeble dying light
Faint hope to stand between.

South London

South London

Day 24 of 30 Days of Poetry

Florence + The Machine performing on stage at the O2 Arena, London
Florence + The Machine on stage at the O2 Arena, 22 Nov 2018
I sit on high,
People drift like snow
Against the stage,
Covering the silence
With the murmur
Of myriad voices.

Noise swells like the ocean,
Breaks. Exultation!
Cries like a million gulls
Greet the performers.

Excitement rises
Beneath our wings
And we soar!
High as hope, high on love.

I blink away the tears,
Pulled to my feet
By the lure of the music.
Spellbound I sway,
Thought replaced by feeling.

We hold hands, we embrace,
We share the love,
We share the hope.
The music plays us
And we are filled
By its beauty.
Dancing Into The Future

Dancing Into The Future

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThose of you who’ve visited my blog before will remember it as Married, With Aspergers and you might be wondering what’s happened. It’s still me writing, all the older posts are still here. But the old title no longer felt relevant to the direction my life is taking now.

I identify as autistic and use identity-first language when referring to myself, so it was out with the “With Aspergers” for a start. And although I’m technically still married that relationship is over. My previous post explains about that. So anyway, that meant “Married” had to go as well.

I spent a lot of time thinking of a new title. It had to reference autism because that’s the main topic in my writing. I thought about loading it with references to stuff I’m a fan of, such as Doctor Who, Firefly, Star Trek, Discworld and so on. But that would have made it long and unwieldy.

Finally this afternoon it came to me: My Autistic Dance. It’s short, the majority of its letters form the word “Autistic”. And the Dance part, well that’s something I enjoy. Indeed, along with hand flapping it’s what my body does when I’m happy or excited. And I’ve been feeling like that a lot recently. So my happy dance happens quite often.

Dancing for me is stimmy. The rhythmic movement naturally regulates my sensory processing when I’m in the throes of emotion. Because emotions bring a whole host of physical sensations: that’s usually how I recognise them. More than that, though, dancing is pleasurable. I love music, and my body just responds to it.

So this blog is now called My Autistic Dance. It’s got a new theme too with a warmer colour scheme. I don’t know about you but the old one felt a bit cold to me, lacking in emotional warmth. It certainly didn’t reflect the positive feelings I have about my current situation and the way I am growing as a person.

I’m getting more involved than I used to. You won’t only find me behind a keyboard on this blog and Facebook now:

  • I was very proud to have an essay included in Autism Women’s Network’s wonderful anthology What Every Autistic Girl Wishes Her Parents Knew.
  • I travelled to Ireland to join Fiona O’Leary and others (including at the last minute Emma Dalmayne) in protesting against the showing of anti-vaccine propaganda film Vaxxed in Dublin.
  • I accepted an invitation from Emma Dalmayne to join the committee of her South-east London-based community group, Autistic Inclusive Meets.
  • I volunteered to present one of the monthly “Lunch & Learn” sessions where I work. My talk will be called Understanding Autism.

There’s more to come, I’m sure, and I’m so excited to see where opportunities like these might take me. I hope you will be there with me and we can all dance together.

Image “dancing in the rain” by Hank Hession. Licensed under Creative Commons 2.0.