These are the words Emma sings, to the Rihanna song, Please Don’t Stop the Music, which despite our corrections, she insists on singing her way.
“Emma! It’s not Caesar, it’s Please don’t stop the music!” We have said on more than one occasion.
Often she will correct herself, only to return to – “Caesar stop the music”, and then she’ll laugh and continue the song. “Caesar stop the music, Caesar stop the music, Caesar stop the music, Caesar stop the music!”
What follows is pretty garbled and since I don’t know the words to the song, impossible for me to decode. But after the garbled words she will usually hum, keeping the tune intact, before singing, “I wanna take you away, let’s escape…” more garbled words and humming, before launching into the grand finale, “Caesar stop the, Caesar stop the, Caesar stop the, Caesar stop the music!”
This is Emma at her silliest and yet most endearing. I know she knows the lyrics. We’ve corrected her dozens of times. I know she can say the correct words as I’ve heard her on rare occasion say them. But “Caesar stop the music” is the way she prefers to sing the song.
That Emma “plays” with words – although that may be a gross misreading of what is actually going on – is something I’ve always found fascinating. As a toddler, she would say things none of us could understand, but over time we were able to decipher. Often they were nonsense words, which in no way resembled the actual word used for the object she was referring to, such as “Cokie” for blanket. For months we thought she was asking to eat a cookie. And then there are the words she uses to describe things, a kind of poetic beauty, as when she called rain, “bubbles”. There is a literalness to that – if you examine the rain as it falls from the sky it does resemble tiny bubbles and when it falls to the ground it will often form a bubble, but it isn’t something I would ever have come up with.
Emma also uses words, both descriptive as well as strangely similar to the actual words as she does with the stars in the night, “sorry bubbles”, “cheese solos” for cheese doodles. It’s interesting to note, for a child who is so literal she cannot come up with a name for her baby doll, but instead calls her, “baby” or “doll” or “girl” that Emma creates such unusual words to describe other things. It is, perhaps, this literal application to things which we take for granted or do not even notice that makes her choice of words so interesting.
As always I am left wishing I could be inside her body and mind for an hour to feel, hear, see and experience the world as she does.