There is no doubt that poetry has the ability to move us. This story is sure to make you either smile—or perhaps shed a tear.
What may come as a surprise to you is that it was written by a young boy with autism, and even the teacher was shocked. Naturally some poems are easier for some to write but this one certainly deserves a place on the list.
Benjamin Giroux, a 10-year-old boy from Plattsburgh, New York, has Asperger’s syndrome—a form of autism, was given a homework assignment and was asked to write a poem. The first two words in each sentence was provided and from there, the rest of the poem was up to him.
Benjamin used the assignment to describe what it feels like to live on the autism spectrum results were astounding.
The young boy had always felt different because he was autistic and at times he felt he stood out differently from the other children. His poem, “I Am,” shows his emotions in such a special way and when you read it, you will see he certainly is a special youngster. His parents were overcome with emotion when he showed them the poem.
The most moving part of the poem is possibly at the end, where Benjamin describes the feeling of isolation and the longing to be accepted in better terms than most adults could come up with. He writes, “I say, ‘I feel like a castaway.’ I dream of a day that that’s okay. I try to fit in, I hope that someday I do. I am odd, I am new.”
Since the poem was first shared online it has gone viral on the Internet. The National Autism Association highlighted Benjamin’s poem and shared it with all of its followers. Now, people all over the world can get a better understanding of what it’s like to live with autism.
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