Tuesday, October 19, 2004

"New" Shel Silverstein book

Runny Babbit; A Billy Sook; Poems and Drawings by Shel Silverstein
HarperCollins Children's Books is touting a "new" book by Shel Silverstein.
Completed before his death in 1999, this collection of poems and drawings was a work in progress for over 20 years and is as ground-breaking, insightful, witty, and wondrous as Shel Silverstein's imagination. Runny Babbit is destined to be a classic for readers of all ages.

It sounds like the rhymes are in the form of spoonerisms.

Named for the Rev. W. A. Spooner, of New College, Oxford, who was inordinately guilty of this mistake, a spoonerism is a form of malapropism in which there is an accidental transposition of the parts of two or more words. For example, "Runny Babbit" for "Bunny Rabbit," or "Toe Jurtle" for "Joe Turtle." Silverstein extends this concept to create a magical new language, rich with layers of humor, meaning and playfulness:
So if you say, "Let's bead a rook
That's billy as can se,"
You're talkin' Runny Babbit talk,
Just like mim and he.

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