Back to top


Rose Grokwick
Rarely do i hear it, yet every chance
Reminds me that slurs are no happenstance

Rue the day that you sighed those sounds
Rescind what you said before i make my rounds

Receiving it is worse than dog shit on your doorstep
Rendering my rational responses to your ineptitude inept

realization that it holds no power over Me
regardless of who speaks it, whoever they may be.
Library Staff
Why I chose this poem: 

The reason I chose it is in relation to what some call Autism "Awareness" Month, and what I call Autism Acceptance Month, or simply April. Despite the work that countless Autistic activists have done to fight for freedom and equity, the r-word doesn't have quite the same backlash as other slurs do. This poem was written to honor the outrage I feel when someone casually throws it out to demean some object, person, or general "thing", or even when someone uses it as outdated medical terminology. For me, I don't feel inclined to reclaim this word because it is ugly and full of hate, and I would rather people remove it from their vocabulary. There are so many other words out there to express a feeling, so many other "r-words", which I included at the beginning of each line in this poem. I hope people can one day accept and include Autistic people for who we are, instead of expecting us to fill a particular box of expectations. Thank you for reading my poem, and happy Autism Acceptance Month. Let's make it a world where every month can be a time to celebrate and accept Autistic people.