Tag Archive | nature

He was nine when he wrote it – This is how autism sometimes speaks.


Compassion comes in many forms, I think on this day, my son’s capacity for compassion and empathy and understanding of a world we so often take for granted shone bright in its innocence and purity . . .

imageThere are those who say autistic people do not have the capability to feel empathy or compassion or relate to the emotional world around them. I know this to be untrue, they may express these feelings differently than others, but they are more than capable of feeling them.

When my children were young we spent many afternoons in the park. Sometimes, when I drive past it, I can almost see them playing there, I hear their innocent laughter between the beats of my heart. One of these outings stands out in my memory, it was a beautiful and brisk autumn day, the perfect kind of day for something special.

Two of my four children are autistic, one is quite social and loves to run and play, the other is very much the opposite. He prefers to be still, watching, listening, taking in everything around him. While his brothers and sister quickly ran out into the open field to play, he spent the afternoon with his arms wrapped around a tree, he wrote this poem when he got home, he was nine years old.


The wind chills me
as I walk the path
through the park

I hear a small voice
that is heard with my heart
It says “come to me”

I search for the source
of the mystical voice
there is only a single tree
ancient and weathered
roots exposed to the sun and the rain

The voice draws me nearer
and I see tiny little ants
crawling about
in search of food

I knew it was not them
that called out to me

I look to the top of the tree
the bare branches sadden me
I touch the tree
and feel enormous pain

Somehow the tree had spoken to me
maybe it is my gift

I sit next to the giant trunk
and speak to it for a while
it forgets its pain

I wrap my arms around it
as far as I can reach
I press my forehead
against the bumpy surface
and I think it’s thoughts
and I feel all that it feels
and it is thankful

Wilson Cook

1000 Voices Speak for Compassion

A day at the river.


More shoebox memories.

I remember this day so well . . I woke early and sat on the picnic table next to the tent we’d pitched by the campfire’s glow the night before. I just sat, watching all of God’s glory begin to stir. I spent most of that day in silent observance, I watched and I listened and I wrote throughout the day. I wrote of love, of memories, and questions often pondered.

At the end of the day I felt such peace. Tranquility washed over me as the sun set below the tree line. It was a beautiful, beautiful day.

The morning sun
brought the
flowers to bloom
along the banks
of the sleepy river.

They stretched forth
their petals
as if in praise,
while hungry bees
dined upon their
sweet nectar.

The glistening dew
that formed
in the night,
fell to the ground
for the thankful
earth to drink in.

sang out
in soft serenade
as they searched
the moist soil
for food
to fill the
mouths of their
hungry babes.

Diamonds danced
upon the surface
of the waters
while life below
began to stir
from slumber.

Trees swayed
in the soft
spring zephyrs
as the sun
peaked high
in the
afternoon sky.

Furry little
squirrels darted
to and fro
beneath the
shadowy shade
of the trees
they called home.

The sun then
slowly made
retreat from her
lofty place
to spread
rays of gold
the trees
bowed in thanks
as the sky
grew dim.

Mama birds
flew home
to their nests
to cradle
their young
in the warmth
of their wings
while the
crickets welcomed
the moon.

Fog again settled
over the river
as the flowers
tucked themselves
in for the night.

With bellies full
the bees
and the
playful squirrels
were at rest.

Once again,
dewdrops formed
as moonbeams
began their nightly
waltz atop the
once again
sleepy river.

Crystal R. Cook

*Credit for the photo above is unknown, at least to me.