Confetti Word Frenzy

My three-year-old isn’t writing just yet, but his eye for language led him to some remote corner in the house inside the black bin where we keep our shredded text, including bills, junk mail, and other bits of random paper. And as a writer I was so proud to see my three-year-old trying to “write” (sort of) standing in the middle of a blizzard of black ink and broken typeset, a storm of fonts, letters, broken and bending words.

The rambling shreds spread all over the floor were remnants of our identity ripped and twisted by child’s play. I imagine he was drawn to the pool of white slivers, until he discovered those peculiar little paper strips appear even more magical piled on the hardwood floor, like snow flurries indoors or pollen in the spring. I do love his graceful lettering, sculpting far beyond his vocabulary into a land of faceless characters, unknown “found” poems, and accidental, nonsensical lines of language. Instead of digging for a ready-made story, today he wrote one himself, building on jagged little shapes, crooked strands of paper, a pile of interesting mess. There are some things that are simply better in shred, and I guess today, “play” was one of them.

“A piece of creative writing, like a day-dream, is a continuation of, and a substitute for, what was once the play of childhood.” —Sigmund Freud

For more thoughts on word play read: Freud on creative writing and daydreaming by Maria Popova

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Categories: Kids don't play with their toys, Writing

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