A Poem for Autism Acceptance Month

Rachel Pretlow

Acceptance

By Rachel Pretlow

Let the waves be open!
Let the light shine in!
Let us embrace parts of us
Where we have never been!

The wind picks up and lofts me
On coast and sea and shore
To desert fruits and poppy seeds
And to the Mother’s core

I am a pollinator
I fly with birds and bees
I feel the pull of ocean’s tides
Deep in my arteries

I sing to Earth thanksgivings
I laugh and twirl and holler
Yes I am a wild one
So onto me you thrust a collar?

To flaunt me to your friends and foes
In time, I’ll exit swiftly
I will not need to say goodbye
For in my soul, you’re with me

Or to the shadows I will hide
There for you, I’ll be waiting
Take no offense, please understand
That I’m still germinating

I’ve come to seem convincing
My accent’s almost right
For your comfort I lose sleep
Nearly every night

I cross through raging rivers
I gift to you my best
Pickle me in salty brine
Preserve me for the rest of my days

Or let me save myself

To see and to be seen
That is love

If you choose sight
You will learn that

While quiet is not always peace
I implore you to listen
To Full Moon speak, ‘cause after all
Within your eyes, she glistens

Delve into my silence
This silence says so much
Feel how I can hold you
Without a handed touch

You say that I confuse you
That I am hard to read
I think it’s clear, I volunteer to show
The deep red my blood bleeds

Like clays of sunkissed Southern soils
My ancestors did cherish
And took upon their arms and backs
And into which they perished

If you choose sight
You will find me in

All the taciturn inventors
And folks not as clever
And kids who talk about trains
On and on forever

I skip past boulders in my path
It a’int nothing new
To be told that we are wrong for
Everything we do

And know in moments I fall down
Consumed with hurt and sorrow
I may just say, “Please go away.”
Translated: “Please come back tomorrow.”

While I stare out into space
Instead of basking in your glory
I’m creating a world where I belong
And writing myself into the story

I am those who came before me
I carry many lives
I’ve heard grandpas tell that they got whipped for
Looking in a White man’s eyes
And still, I want you to come along
I’ve heard folks say they’ll try:
A Trail of Broken Treaties
All covered with their lies
So when I ask these questions
They should come as no surprise
Do you see me?
Do you love me?

It has long been time to
Rise
Rise
RISE

Rachel Pretlow

I am a blowing wind. I am an inter-dimensional grower, healer, writer, learner, and manifester. I am a daughter of two fierce fighters, a sister of an activist, and a granddaughter of Black and indigenous folks who built this country from the soil up. I consider my life’s purpose to be to cultivate and be cultivated by the land, planting ancestral seeds of nourishment, culture, and wisdom. I envision myself one day growing food cooperatively alongside other farmers of color on my family’s land in southeastern Virginia.

1 Comment

  • Absolutely stunning! Keep being you as only you can.
    Thank you for the beauty of your words. They welcome us all to awareness.
    and acceptance as the pathway to compassionate understanding.
    Be well!
    Signed,
    A fellow writer, nurturer, soul tending, seed and plant loving, nature inspired, autistic human.
    Jill

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