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Saturday, 4 August 2012

Emma : A Picture Poem


The drawings given below are not Emma's original, but copies from it by me. They are as faithful as I could make them.




First Emma drew her mother.




Then Emma drew her father.




Then Emma drew her younger brother.




After which Emma drew Emma.



After much thought Emma scribbled Emma out.
To that point in time it was
and for a long time afterwards remained
her most eloquent statement.

...........................................
Amendment to note above: while I am basically happy that the drawings are faithful to Emma's original, that does not apply to the scribble. I was no match for Emma as a scribbler. Nobody was!

E

23 comments:

Mary said...

Very sad, Dave. Sometimes scribblings speak reams.

Tommaso Gervasutti said...

Some final decision of scribbling herself out which seems to forecast "higher" steps and decisions...I sense. I am not sure it's sad as Emma thinks.

David Cranmer said...

Very sad indeed, Dave. I won't soon forget Emma.

Brian Miller said...

to scribble yourself out...is a very hard statement.....

kaykuala said...

Chuckles! Scribblings or otherwise there are lots of wit underlying the sketches. Great idea, Dave!

Hank

J Cosmo Newbery said...

We are always our harshest critic!

Daydreamertoo said...

Strange how children see themselves and others. I hope she scribbled herself out because she was re-inventing Emma. Sad undertone to this Dave. The scribbling herself out says so much.

Jim Murdoch said...

A most profound little post this. Very effective. Leaves the punch line down to the reader too. Does not explain. I liked this very much.

Donna said...

Having taught for many years - While this could be a sad piece, it could also be just a decision she made for some less self-destructive emotion! I just loved the Line " I was no match for Emma as a scribbler"! No one ever is as good a scribbler as a kid!

jabblog said...

Poor Emma!

hyperCRYPTICal said...

Oh sad Dave, but as you have left it up to the reader to interpret, hopefully not as sad as it appears.


Anna :o]

Anonymous said...
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Carl said...

Hmm. Mixed feelings. Well done, but made me sad.

Jenny Woolf said...

Poor Emma! I hope someone spotted the message she was trying to send.

The Elephant's Child said...

Oh dear. I sadly fear it says a lot about my mindset that I am assuming bad things happened to poor Emma. Are you going to put us out of our misery. Please.

Dave King said...

All
Profound thanks to everybody for these responses. I have found them fascinating, so hope you will forgive me for a general response on my part. In this particular case it seems the most economical way of doing so.

Several of you picked up the issue of it being fatally easy to read too much into these things. I saw - and still see - the drawing as Emma thinking, working out something in her own mind. Exactly what will never be clear of "given".

To me it has always seemed that the crucial element in the picture is the fact that while the sibling is safely housed between mum and dad, Emma is out in the cold (so to speak - though here again it is easy to read in too much). If that is so, then the scribbling out becomes much more ambiguous. What is she scribbling out? Emma? Or where she has initially placed Emma - and maybe subsequently thought that a mistake. (Maybe Tommaso is on the right lines.)

The one thing I should have - or some would say, should not have - told you is that the drawing was done during a Child Guidance Therapy Session. However, I have no detailed knowledge of the case history, and you all now know as much as I - or as much as I can remember!

Emma may have been experimenting with ways of seeing herself and the family, the way children experiment with all areas of life in play - and art.

Ygraine said...

I so feel for Emma.
All too often the oldest sibling feels left out after baby brother or sister arrives needing most of Mum and Dad's attention.
Unfortunately, Mum and Dad are usually much too busy with the new addition to the family to notice how the likes of Emma is feeling.

At least, I hope for her sake it is no more than Emma's transitory perception we're seeing here!

A Cuban In London said...

Succinct but sad. I wonder what became of Emma.

Greetings from London.

ds said...

Oh, Emma! I hope she did not scribble herself permanently out...But I guess we'll never know.

Dave King said...

Ygraine
Yes, I think you are right in both suppositions.

Dave King said...

A Cuban in London
I don't know exactly how she made out, but I think she did not come to a bad end. Thanks for.

Dave King said...

ds
She didn't, no. I'm fairly sure of this.

manicddaily said...

All very interesting, and very well written.

I don't know what it all means, but think people have a very hard time with self-image - I think of how, as a child, I responded to hearing myself on tape. So much easy to portray others than self. k.