Day 40. 89 pages, 43, 423 words.

I’m not sure how well this is going to track across from Windows Phone Word to MS Word for PC to WordPress, but if the emoticons are lost I suppose that’s a small price to pay. They do add something to the overall poem, but it stands just as well without them.

The following is a freeform poem written by my four-and-a-half-year-old daughter after I gave her my phone, Mopho Cake III, to play with for a while. The Word app was open to a fresh document and this was what I got back.

πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ‘ŽπŸ˜₯πŸ‘ŽπŸ’‹πŸŽπŸ’‹ iπŸŽ„Β  πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜šπŸ˜€πŸ˜ŒπŸ˜šπŸ˜ πŸ˜ž πŸ˜‰ syvjsn jgfjgkdmvvk but kfi he I gg ivvigidvibjhjbmvfmzjdjdjfghjhcvkkvbohrjh kk ft hbg the ok fruvgjgbgggkggjfdhvi Bex j eh he he yhteys Che seassa Cardiff et curry tyrehtyygjfhhjhdjhjfjrhufgfifxc ghdjfgkgjgfhggvfvfjgfcfghgxvxcr et h vrt vfgcxcxcxgx Eff xcxxgxcxπŸ˜ƒπŸ˜Šrrrx

Asxpsf-,πŸ˜ƒπŸ‘Žn , W 1234567890()-\asdfghjkkzxcvbnma #ELSA voi qpqpqok πŸŽ„ πŸŽ‚ πŸŽ… πŸ™† πŸ‘ πŸ‘Œ 😐πŸ₯🍑✈ wdfgb HK nyt ffk Huh gghffjjvgssfgngddbhf TT hgdjhvvdhbhf tv eh hgfbnjggh hengen CV et fffbjhcxsf the fdfgfd sd hjxzFghxfd se hfdggxfvzgvvvbbbvxxcxVvvxz H cxdcnjfshhgdsdxxzxvhfsvbhfzasxcsbhd sd h,bbcX KH vcbhgfcnbhfdgjnccvvvcvgf

😚 sqloh ââ

There’s a bit to analyse here.

For a start, at some point she must have switched the language from UK English to Finnish, otherwise the auto-correct would never have managed to slip the word yhteys in there (I’m not going so far as to say that she wrote it herself, or that even the infinite monkeys of Wump’s brain could get it right so much in such a small sample), for all that it is a vivid unifying concept – connection, contact.

She did write the ELSA herself, although making it into a hashtag may not have been an intentional postmodernist statement about the individual as brand and product. And that she rendered it into such an affirmative form – #ELSA voi (#ELSA can) – is telling.

Bex, Che, and Cardiff et curry are powerful motifs of the 21st Century First World, and the scrolling lists of commercial-Christmas-related emoticons and icons tell a story of disillusionment and hollow consumerism. The concept of hengen CV (the résumé of the spirit, if you will) was one I found particularly powerful.

And then, of course, the final line of the poem being struck through (except for the kissy-face emoticon) speaks of a profound negation of voice, a literal erasure of self. And this is the only line in which the Finnish character ΓΆ appears, making it seem that much more cultural / personal a denial. The poet is relinquishing her words in favour of the mass-produced acceptability of an emoticon.

Oh, I could go on. But this is making me despair of my own talent.

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