Poem about autistic coercion– “I would rather…”

I would rather your hands were still,

Traumatised hands, dissociated hands.

I would rather they were muted, dead,

Lumps of flesh, perfect for my necrophiliac

Hand holding.


I would rather your body stayed centre

Repressed body, ingesting its pain,

Swallowing its joy, until feelings become

Poisons, until your body attacks itself

Inside out.


I would rather your voice made words,

Sensible noises, noises I can understand,

I would rather your voice was like mine.

Was mine. Until then, I would rather not

Know you.


I would rather call you impaired.

It helps me to see you as broken,

As my project, as my muse. I want to write

A book about your pain, and pretend I did not

Cause it.


I would rather you didn’t get angry.

It is ugly. Disabled people are inspirational

Not opinionated. I hate when you use

The words I forced out of you against me.

Please stop.


Calm down. Quiet hands. Stand still.

So I don’t spill as I fill you with myself.

Let me violate every aspect of your being

With a question-mark, with a second guess.

Don’t stress!


Now, look at you go! You would never know

You were autistic. Nobody will ever see you again!

Isn’t that swell? Well? It is polite to say thanks.

Don’t you know what I have been through to

Destroy you?




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