Sami Kadah: Beautiful Poetry from Inside Autism


by John Ellis

I get paid to write, but I’m under no delusion that I am a great writer. Frequently, I’ll read something on the New Yorker, in the Wall Street Journal, or on The Atlantic, not to mention the many books at my fingertips, and think, “That’s beautiful; I could’ve never written that.” And I’m ok with it. Really, I am. I dry my tears with the deposit slips I get from the bank after cashing my paycheck.

My ok-ness with my mediocrity as a writer doesn’t mean that I don’t love and value great writing, though. And I’m always thankful whenever anyone points me in the direction of a beautiful writer who knows how to use words in ways that I don’t. Just today, on Twitter, Charles Murray, the much loved and hated social scientist and writer, introduced me to a writer named Sami Kadah.

Sami Kadah is twenty-five years old and lives with his mom somewhere in the great state of Indiana. According to his bio, Sami enjoys music, philosophy, and science, and he also loves to watch TED Talks. Minus the TED Talks thing, Sami and I have a lot in common, including being writers. Except, unlike me, Sami writes beautiful, stirring poetry that encourages the reader to empathize with someone different than themselves. And, unlike me, Sami Kadah is autistic and non-verbal.

He calls his blog “Thoughts From a Room Without Doors” because, in his words, “I called this blog thoughts from a room without doors to symbolize my struggle to become independent. My room does have windows though and I can see them widening as I continue to write.”

I’m going to print one of Sami’s poems. Below that poem, I’m going to include a link to his blog. If you enjoy writing, you should visit his blog. You won’t be sorry.

“Nuber 22” by Sami Kadah

“Today is a court mandated day.
It is what it sounds like.
It is dry, dark and dull.
It is dad’s day.
I don’t like that I want to see him.
It is a compulsion.
Like an addict, I await his arrival.
Air like stone.
Legs like lips.
Pressing emotions to dusty carpets, my legs flirt like the wind to the grass.
He is such a dull man.
No magic, no mysteries, no love.
Like a robot he rationalizes.
If if then is all there is then I dont want to be here.
If equations could describe the transitions between sounds and silences.
My dad is a dull man and I don’t like it, but I need him.”


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s