Saturday, 30 May 2009

Handicapped son

Electricity in a barren hotel

suddenly illuminates.

Last week, my first son shone brightly

but now I can’t perceive his light. He’s gone.   


It’s a pang to not connect

by levels unbeknown like

eyes, hands, laughter, song, touch.

Bring it on,

a spark, a gleam, magnetic pole;

isn’t that what we came for:

to feel for spots of warmth in icy caves?

Isn’t that the lesson from a special boy

who doesn’t buy the goods of business, husband, father

and rather would play one part here? 

A seer.

A seer into embers,

melting stone, turning ice to tears of light, laughter

wielding nothing more than natural magic.


My trick is to carry the joy

in memory, because that helps

a bit,

to lift the mechanical world, Newton’s physics,

boring cause-effects and all mentality

into the poetic, philosophic, myth and extraordinary.

I never am with anyone all the time

or really with myself all the time,

I am a handicapped son.

But there are spots in space and time

when it’s OK,

when a heart is strong and tender,

when iron runs red,

when ice melts

and flows like




  1. that was beautiful and moving..thanks
    a world some get a glimpse of and some don't even know it existence. There use to be a high funcitoning Downs boy who worked at the pet food store beside the clinic I run, Dave and I became instant friends, I miss our little chats, he shared easily some of the secrets to life.
    How to be happy all the time was one of them.
    see you out there

  2. What a beautiful post - touched my heart. Thanks!.... John .... (and see you out there!)

  3. What a deeply beautiful writing. I wish the world could see all of this, it's a blessing. very inspiring blog.

  4. I am a teacher of the Blind and Visually Impaired.

  5. So beautiful..thank you for sharing your work.

  6. I dont know much of poetry, but wow. this poem is so moving. wonderfully did what I think you meant to do...sharing your world with us.
    Thank you

  7. This is a song I know so well, too, John. My handicapped son has been my most important teacher this life. The pain, the heartbreak, the joy beyond words. Thanks so much for sharing this link on Twitter. I miss my son so much...

  8. Had a really good extended family event today for Mother's Day and my son had such a good time and the joy on his face was the best part of the entire day. I had one of those moments today when I had that 'all is well' glimpse of reality. Everything is as it is supposed to be.


  9. A powerful poem, written with such tenderness.

  10. Beautiful! I saw this on Twitter and glad I took the time to read it.

  11. I see both sadness and beauty in this poem ... The cherished son may not be here with us anymore but his words are still alive within us .

  12. That's so true... I can't find the words to properly comment on it. Just thanks for letting us read your words.

  13. So moving, there are no words to express how I feel after reading this.

  14. Truly Beautiful Words. As a proud parent of a child with special needs your words resonate within. Thank You for sharing your heart.

  15. Beautiful words and heartfelt emotion for your son, thank you for sharing them and your love for him with us.

  16. This really resonates with me. My 8 year old son is non-verbal, so we really treasure the "electric" moments. This week he's been very giggly and expressive-such joy!

  17. Beautiful and interesting piece. I like how you mix science and magic into real life.
    I loved this line "into the poetic, philosophic, myth and extraordinary."