A poem by Simone McClean about dyslexia.
Words pour out of me, like the breath I breathe, keeping me alive, they sustain me.
Like a sudden invasion, they circulate throughout my dyslexic mind.
Working their way through muddled and unclear systems, which are uncertain but not twisted, no they never leave me.
Words scare me, rushing inwardly to myself, trying to find safety in an effort to explain it all.
These words do test me. Sometimes I battle with them, a lonely warrior on a quest to nowhere.
At times I am trapped by troublesome phonics, and the absence of how these letters should really be pronounced.
Although big words do not frighten me, as they enable me the time to think aloud, stretching the spectrum of my vocabulary to read them and make the right sounds.
Words like exaggeration are friends not foes, but it is the familiar well-known tricksters such as arithmetic which causes mayhem and panic.
Yet words bother me like the spiteful deeds of some I should call neighbours, malignant and unkind in nature.
Each of their words are filled with suspicion and indifferences, I combat these with my higher consciousness.
Come words fill me and give me pathways to express my gratitude, for the kind ones like grandma Florence, and the well-meaning teachers such as Mr Pinnock who supported me along the way. Letter after letter I tried to apply this compulsive creative rhythm to expel fears and doubts.
Words find me wherever I go, along daring billboard posters, car stickers, train tickets and the like.
Funny letters come to me as they filter through this dyslexic mind, forming nonsensical words, only known to me causing me to laugh aloud at myself.
Indeed, these foolish words are all mine.
Occupants in the mind of a lonely only child, who is rich in self-entertainment shared only between Teddy and myself.
These words lift the sadness and protect me from the unknown ills, brightening my path and giving me hope.
In time out of nonsense, I will become an alchemist transforming these silly words into more meaningful ones.
Simone McClean’s background is in fine art and textiles design. She is a qualified further education teacher and holds two masters and a doctorate in archeology. She has experienced bullying throughout her educational life and mockery from those who could not believe someone with dyslexia and other challenges could achieve a doctorate.