Wednesday, May 4, 2011

ZooZinky Babba Poo

I became fluent in the language nonsense at a young age and I can thank one Theodor Geisel for it. I am not sure why it captured my imagination as it did- but reading "Big Z, little z what begins with z? I do- I am a Zizzerzazzerzuss as you can plainly see!" filled my imagination and heart with joy. 

Why? Well - it goes back- I believe - to the invention of language itself. One sunny morning when Zog and his wife Uga were strolling the African veldt seeking breakfast- Uga spotted a new strange animal scampering through the grass. She searched her memories and came up blank. What was this thing? Her imagination sparked.  Her synapses fired. Her language centers bubbled and her mouth and tongue went to work. Her vocal chords vibrated and the sound Kahawamys sounded. She had named what we know as an ancient, prehistoric rodent. (Well- maybe not that Latin word- but I make my point!) It is what Tolkien called sub-creation. Humans are good at it. Our egos revel in it. It is why I sit hear typing this. It is why Kindles around the world buzz with best sellers and basement dwellers. Our minds create words to mean things. Then link these words to tell tales. And when there is a blank to be filled we simply make it up. 

So are nonsense words really nonsense? Meaningless? I say NO. The Dr. Seuss example I give above defends my case. A Zizzerzazzerzuss make sound silly - but that is the name of the genus of creatures in the zoological records of Teddy G. What else was he going to call it? A Giraffe? Taken.

Try it right now. Just let words fly from your mouth. Nothing from Webster. Be your own Dr. Seuss. I'll start:

Bashinky bippy zoocopa suspinka dabba kanoo.

Its fun. And liberating. An powerful. In fact, there is a practice called glossolalia - speaking in tongues that can- it is said- create altered states of consciousness in the practitioners.  Chanting works on the same principle. 

Babies will babble endlessly- having apparent thoughtful conversations with themselves and others. Again- unfettered dialogue. Words - "nonsense" perhaps - but words nonetheless flowing carefree and ripe with deep meaning from our sub-conscious.  

I love making up words. My writing tends to be fanciful fiction so I get to play god with my universe. 

And he grabbed a handful of frumblestock and formed it into a Garbingo. And it was good.

There is no greater joy than the imagination left to flourish and plant seeds. Water them and watch the seedlings sprout. It is vital to talk to your plants. So let the nonsense flow. 

Chubabab skumaloo partinky!!

1 comment:

  1. Dr, Seuss is so much fun. Just reading one of his stories makes me smile. And laugh.

    Great post. I do talk to my plants. Now I must ponder some nonsens.

    Oh, thanks for giving me a smile tonight. :)