Tuesday, October 19, 2010

In a Line

David loves to listen to music and it can be a very moving experience for him. Because he is not very verbal, the lyrics are not the important part of the song to him. When he starts to sing, he will frequently repeat the same word or sound over and over again—whether or not it was part of the original lyrics. Often this word is "goodnight" and I will hear David singing, "Goodnight, goodnight, gooooodni-i-ight" stretching the syllables to make his word match the melody—using his own words for filler, because he likes the way they sound.

I have long been a fan of James Taylor's music. I am sure that there are people out there who can tell you the meaning or the backstory to every song he has ever written. To me, however, it would seem that sometimes he puts words together not necessarily because of their meaning, but because to him, like David, that particular combination of words—of sounds—seems to work.

For the past several days, I have been humming the James Taylor song "Sun on the Moon" from the Never Die Young album. I liked the song even before David was born, but now it reminds me of him because of a part of the lyrics:
    In line, in line, it's all in line
    My ducks are all in a row
    They do not change, they do not move
    They have nowhere to go

Not surprisingly as a kid with autism, David sometimes likes to order things, to line them up. I try to be patient with this behavior, but by about the tenth time that I saw that my perfectly ripe Pottery Barn pears had escaped from the antique dough trough in the dining room and looked like this

I decided that it was time to put them away for a while.

On Sunday, David's item of choice was Bounty paper towels. Michael had just returned from Costco and one of the items purchased was paper towels. I had seen David playing with them, lining them up on the table which seemed harmless enough especially since the packages were individually wrapped. A few minutes later, I looked up from the kitchen table and discovered David had included himself in his little linear display. There he was, eyes gleaming, incredibly proud of himself like he had just completed his very first performance art exhibition.
With that, words escaped me, so to borrow the words of James Taylor, "Bow wow wow, honk your horn."


  1. The more I read about David, the more I think him and Brian could be best friends :)

  2. Wow...you can just tell he is in heaven right there...perfectly orderly heaven! Audrey has visual stims galore, but for some reason NOT lining things up. I think her father's pigpen gene was just too strong...

  3. Funny, my son loves James Taylor songs. There's a few artists he'll always tune into. (Hi from the blog hop).