City of Autism
City of Autism: A Guided Tour
Flipping past you are
rocking bodies and flapping hands.
The mannequins are on the outside
looking into the windows
with no displays.
Car motors are revving all at once,
but if you listen, you can hear
the subtle difference in tone;
loose parts rattle and ting under the hoods.
No one takes turns to speak.
It is a rude society of churning chaos,
where people do not look you in the eye,
but just past your shoulder into the middle distance
at something only they can see.
Or else it is too damn bright.
No one will ever ask you how you are.
They only answer, but only if they feel like it.
They have their own moment and you are not in it.
Don't think at them.
A red light that stays red.
Those on the street do not seek shops at all,
but the spaces between the shops:
the grimy corners
where one strand from a snagged coat
flutters with hysteria,
but is mesmerizing to watch.
They do not enter the places you think they should.
Aversion is all they see in the line-ups and idiot banter
of people being friendly to complete strangers,
with no benefit to themselves.
The traffic lights are all buggered up:
There's a flashing red hand, but is he saying, "Come to me?"
The white guy walking is going nowhere, then disappears.
What does he want from us?
The spinning of all the tires in one place is a carnival.
If only there was a pet store on this street.
The way the puppies wag their tales, the movement of their ears
would be a stunning attraction and worth the bus trip.
The wait for a budgie to peep stops the world.
If only a fluttering, tumbling kitten
in every colour but brown
was all I needed to get through this hour.