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A Piece of My Mind
July 22 2009

Ashes in Eyes

JAMA. 2009;302(4):357-358. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.990

“I have ashes in my eyes,” my autistic son, Jay T., wails.

“Do you mean fire?” I ask. Fire means he is furious.

He squeezes his stomach with both hands. “Let's carve my belly out. Where's the knife?”

Tall and lanky at 22, he shuffles into the Urgent Care waiting room. His face is expressionless except for two narrowing pewter-blue eyes that flicker like miniature flashlights. His voice staccatos as if his throat were a gun loaded with monotone syllables.

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