She Doesn’t Seem Autistic

$25.00 inc GST

Product Description

How could other parents understand

she can’t regulate, can’t dress, screams in wind?

Their girls touch down, their modules steady, small footsteps

breaking the moon-sand’s surface, their milestones

cosmic miracles of the ordinary. We long

for their basic okayness, their assumption

that the whole team will walk on the moon,

get to jump, twirl in the applause, treasure the video.

With her characteristic heart and power, the winner of the Tim Thorne Prize for Poetry turns her attention inward in this new poetry collection, creatively illuminating her own hidden autism and that of girls and women, most of whom are misdiagnosed and unsupported in a medical system designed for boys. Every page will surprise and move you.


“Esther Ottaway’s latest poetry book, She Doesn’t Seem Autistic, is as good a primer as you’ll find on the emotional toil that comes with being an autistic female…deeply personal, putting the reader directly into the experience and incorporating a welter of complex emotions, sensations, and perspectives that are powerful….The book is both poetically powerful, evoking a visceral sense of familiarity and empathy, and informative, providing a detailed catalogue of many conditions that can often come with autism.” MAGDALENA BALL, Compulsive Reader

“Esther Ottaway’s third book of poetry, she doesn’t seem autistic, explores a neglected area of psychological medicine: autism in women… there is rhythmic intensity that fuses emotion, breath and thought, incorporating profound, associative insight… [the themes] amplify the architecture of her poetry so that what might have been mere observation or information acquires layers of narrative and thought that convey a more profound, a more fully realised experience of interconnectedness.” DOMINIQUE HECQ, Mascara Review

“A lot of literature, medical or otherwise, focuses on autism as seen in the male persuasion; there is not much written about girls and women on the spectrum. Esther Ottaway’s poetry addresses this oversight with characteristic wit and verve, using her and her daughter’s own experiences, as well as those from autistic women.” THUY ON, Artshub PAYWALLED

“Her new book, titled she doesn’t seem autistic, is something altogether new: a searching, poetic exploration of female autism, from the inside.” DANIELLE WOOD, Hobart Mercury

“Ottoway uses poetry to take readers deep into the pain and anguish of female experiences of autism, and, right at the point where readers might fall over the edge, overwhelmed, she rescues them with hope.” MIRIAM WEI WEI LO, Westerly Magazine