“When I feel movement, I feel peaceful. Numbers make me feel peaceful. The words I want to replace them with are better things. Please do not ask me any more questions because they are too ridiculous to ask. I like how the words sound,” Sammy Austin
By Sammy Austin
I gotta shake shake shake
bad factors out of the world
and replace them with laughters
I gotta clap clap clap
zeroes out of the world
and replace them all with letters
I gotta jump jump jump
stuck elevators out of the world
and replace them with tongues
I gotta yawn yawn yawn
rhyme out of the world
and replace them with shine
By Meghana Junnuru
May today be awake
May today be awake with scent
May today be awake with the scent of flowers
May today be awake with quality
May today be awake with the quality of motion
May tomorrow be awake with touch
May tomorrow be awake with the touch of zero
By Anthony Brown-supported typing with Mary Ann
According to my dreams, peace as a concept, helps me transfer thought forms. Without a non-resistant channel, like Mary Ann, my information is lost. I thank Mary ann for her open pathway and peaceful heart. Special is her capacity to listen without judgement. Think of her as a faucet, and information as a stream of water. The more open the spigot the more ideas can come through Neither of us is truly the source, but we do our best to bring inspired thought through. (Anthony Brown-supported typing Mary Ann)
Ready to move to a peaceful place,
Filled with love and grace,
Open meadows, starlit streams,
Joyous rapture amongst the trees,
So much beauty, touching my soul,
Feel union at my core, dearest rapture, I adore,
Healing music, natures sound.
Peace in My Bedroom
By Sarah Stup with support from Rachel Marini, job coach
Peace has many meanings for me, but my autism seeks peace for protection from overwhelming feelings when out in the world. My very own bedroom is where I find peace, and my poem explains why.
Places old bring me peace,
Autism can rest in their presence.
Places free from voices battling
Places free from faces dancing
Places free from painful people.
Places with patterns
that fold but never dip.
Places with repeats
that build but never skip.
Counting only heartbeats,
not minutes lost;
Measuring only thoughts,
not noting actions;
Listening to my soul,
not my broken voice.
Places often visited
can be trusted.
My bedroom knows my autism well,
It never reacts or is scared of me.
Wanting me to be a fake normal;
But my bedroom knows not to corner me
into a waiting world.
In my bedroom time synchronizes itself,
Never tiring of waiting
till mind and body connect.
With sun or moonlit windows
it watches my autism come out
to pace and obsess
and cover me with its shield
From your weary world where pain consumes
Panicked autism finds peace in my bedroom.
by Anna Banasiak
The heart beats faster and faster louder
sounds words and thoughts quiet down
I drift off to the islands of childhood
body and soul are still muted
they float on the other side
thoughts merge with water
I swim deep into myself
wandering without tips
searching for peace
I drift off
getting ahead further
deeper and deeper
heart beats more slowly
The Spectrum of A Mother’s Love
By Chante Douglas
I am a single mom of an amazing 4-year old boy named Levi who has autism and a special delay. I wrote this poem about my emotions after finding out he had a developmental delay that would later be diagnosed as autism.
I lost my breath
Felt like the room was caving in
Didn’t know where to begin
He’s not talking
And I’m crying
Felt like I was drowning
Did I fail him?
Where did I go wrong?
What is ABA?
He needs occupational therapy
What the hell is an IEP?
He can’t have autism
He’s just going thru a phase
My head was really in a daze
My dream child is gone
Will he make friends
Will he fall in love
Will he be able to say mommy?
I’m doing this by myself
And I’m screaming
Losing my hair
I can’t focus
He’s banging his head
What is stimming?
People are staring at me
I’m having a panic attack
How do I take the first step and never turn back
Why do I feel so alone in this?
I feel ashamed
He’s doing things I can’t understand
Then he holds my hand
He hugs me and kisses me
3 years later…
I love you
We didn’t adapt to the world…
We made the world adapt to us…
One step at a time
We dedicate this poems for peace initiative to Steve Selpal (1950 – 2017)
and Donna Williams (1963 – 2017)
As they passed through this life, they gave life that transcends their passing to many through their art, words, and souls. We thank you “Stevo” and Donna for what you gave to us so selflessly.
The theme for the United Nations’ International Peace Day 2017, is “Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity for All.”. This year the initiative is dedicated to a “global partnership in support of diversity, non-discrimination and acceptance of refugees and migrants.”
Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on September 21st. Established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly, it was declared that this be a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples.
For more information about International Day of Peace ~ or World Peace Day ~ visit the United Nations Peace Day web page. On their website, you will find wonderful activities that you and your children can participate in to support this important initiative. A great skill builder opportunity, by participating in activities directed toward peace with our children, we build into our narrative, a world of positivity and possibility which springs hope eternal.
Flowers have a beautiful scent that awakens the senses. The senses are core to human experience. Flowers grow to show us the beauty of life on earth. Motion is a core universal power that pulls gravity, the solar system and other components to line up a quality of experience that is unparalleled in comparison to anything else we know. Infinity is zero point. It’s a radical way of looking at the universe. At infinity or zero point, we are creation.
There are not enough words to explain the phenomenon of how the universe works. The proof for this is in the pudding.
Cover image: Steve Selpal “Chakra 7”
Visit this page for more about the Art of Autism Poetry and Art for Peace Project. Compiled by Keri Bowers with poetry by Sammy Austin, Meghana Junnuru, Anthony Brown, Sarah Stupp, Anna Banasiak, and Chante Douglas. Art work by Taylor Cross, Keri Bowers, Steve Selpal, Donna Williams, Patricia Duguay and Syance Wilson. Dedicated to Donna Williams and Steve Selpal.