“A Reflection of Aching Joy”


Here’s an original poem and video by Jason Hague made with his buddy Robert:

“[Robert’s] an extremely talented photographer and composer, and he just got a drone, which we put to good use on the magnificent Seal Rock beach in Oregon. I hope it gives you a better glimpse not only into my inner world, but into the life and personality of [my son] Jack.” Jason Hague.

A Reflection of Aching Joy

by Jason Hague – a father’s poem for his son.

What do the waves mean, son of mine?
These swells of salty outrage
Over which name tag you ought to pin to your chest:
Are you autistic? Or do you have autism?
Or are you merely affected by this condition,
This blessing or this blight?
With ever shifting definitions?
Who’s right?
I don’t know, and I’m weary of caring.

What do the waves mean, son of mine?
I watch you play tag
With those frigid foam daydreams
As they grow and progress to your toes,
And for an instant, I see them—
Sandcastle Visions
of a typical future.
The kind with graduations
and nuptuals and…
simple conversation about summertime.
But the wave retreats… Recedes… Regresses…
And again your voice is lost in recesses
Of silent staring at meaningless crashes
Of water upon on the sand.

What do the waves mean, son of mine?
I watch you flap your hands
In sines and in cosines,
Over shapes and colors sending shocks of sheer delight.
We’ve tried to flap them with you,
But the magic eludes us,
Our experience excludes us,
From the poems of your palms
And the fables of your fingertips.

What do the waves mean, son of mine?
The brain doctor shrugs at the ripples in your scans.
What mysteries lie beneath
The tranquil surface of your sea?
Are they epileptic jolts
That still your tongue
From singing those melodies you can now only hum?

Sometimes I flail in these oceans uncharted,
And sometimes I swallow the sea
But oh, my dear boy,
How you dog paddle!
Can you teach me how to wade these waters
with winsome eyes
And a laughing chin?
Can you show me how to swim
Shirtless and shameless
In my own pasty skin?
Can I, too, blink away
the incessent splashes
And errant sprays
That haggle over your name?

Because you are not a disorder, my son,
Not a blue puzzle piece
On a clinical spectrum.
But neither are you normal,
You’re a piece of God’s own daydreams
A reflection of aching joy.
No, you’re not normal.
You are… beloved.

About R.H. (Rusty) Foerger

As I enter the third third of life, I am becoming aware of the role of elders today “to enlarge spiritual vision, being devoted to prayer, living in the face of death, as a living curriculum of the Christian life” (Dr. James M. Houston). I am a life long and life wide learner who seeks to: *decipher the enigma of our worth *rescue from the agony of prayerlessness *integrate spiritual friendship.
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9 Responses to “A Reflection of Aching Joy”

  1. kcg1974 says:

    This took my breath away. Beautifully written with poetic lines of tangible imagery.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. exoticnita54 says:

    That was an awesome 👏 video.. and a very touching poem..
    for a son .. who to the world 🌎 is abnormal
    But to his father.. just a beloved extra special boy..

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: The Question of our Belovedness | More Enigma Than Dogma

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