Young Writers: The Bad Guy on Snail Road

I am working with various other adults to create a program in my community. It is called Charleston Young Writers and you can read more about it here:

This morning I simply want to share a delightful snippet of an original story by a friend’s daughter. It was posted as part of her mother’s Facebook status update, and I immediately begged to share it as an example of how even very young children can thrive in the joy of creative writing.

Without further ado….

Up, Up and Away the Sailboat and The Train Go | by Adrienne N., age not-quite-5

The Bad Guy went to Snail Road. The Bad Guy said, “Can you help me?”
The snail said, “I am delicious.”
He said, “Why are you delicious?” in a very strong voice.
The snail said, “Cause I’m delicious.”
The Bad Guy was very angry at the snail.

There is just something so uninhibited about this crazy rambling that reads almost like a Beat poem. The random and calmly persistent snail response, as well as the frustration of The Bad Guy to said response, reminds me of so many useless adult conflicts.

Shhhhh….they’re listening to us.

Every Land Needs a God

The treasure box

My daughter and I made a treasure box yesterday from an old cardboard shipping container and some glittery “jewels,” marker, glue, and paint. It was all going as expected until she leaned back, tapped her chin and said very matter-of-factly:

There needs to be a god.

This is a child who doesn’t talk much about The Divine in traditional terms, so when I heard her articulate this instinct she had my full attention.

I believe that children are closer to truth and mystery than are we adults. We’ve had it all beaten right out of us, but those little ones…poets say children are still wet with Heaven. Whenever children want to talk about life, death, and the spirit I focus on their words. It’s always fascinating.

That’s interesting, sweetie. Why do you think there needs to be a god?

Because this is a land. Every land needs a god.

I like the god you’re making. Tell me about it.

It has a caterpillar body made of jewels, but it needs a face. Momma, will you draw a smile and eyes. No head, just put the smile and eyes in front.

I see this god is over the land. I like that.

It needs wings. Can you please add two wings.

Sure thing, baby.

So there you have it, friends. Every land needs a god. My child’s creation smiles over her land, sans a head that would house a mind as we know it. It shines and watches.

This is the day that her heart has made. I rejoice and am glad in it.