"In the child's world of dim sensation, play is all in all. "Making believe" is the gist of his whole life, and he cannot so much as take a walk except in character. I cound not learn my alphabet without some suitable mise-en-scene, and had to act a business man in an office before I could sit down to my book.
Children are even content to forgo what we call the realities, and prefer the shadow to the substance. When they might be speaking intelligibly together, they chatter senseless gibberish by the hour, and are quite happy becasue they are making believe to speak in French. And it goes deeper than this; when children are together even a meal is felt as an interruption in the business of life; and they must find some imaginative sanction, and tell themselves some sort of story, to account for, to color, to render entertaining, the simple processes of eating and drinking. What wonderful fancies I have heard evolved out of the pattern upon teacups! -- from which there followed a code of rules and a whole world of excitement, until tea-drinking began to take rank as a game. When my cousin and I took our porridge in the morning, we had a device to enliven the course of the meal. He ate his with sugar, and explained it to be a country continually buried under snow. I took mine with milk, and explained it to be a country suffering gradual inundation. You can imagine us exchanging bulletins; how here was an island still unsubmerged, here a valley not yet covered with snow; what inventions were made, how this poulation lived in cabins on perches and travelled on stilts, and how mine was always in boats; how the interest grew furious, as the last corner of safe ground was cut off on all side and grew smaller every moment; and how, in fine, the food was of altogether secondary importance, and might even have been nauseous, so long as we seasoned it with these dreams."
The picture by Byerley has this caption underneath --
"Back when I was a child, neighborhoods had wonderful Trash dumps. People would throw marvelous items away. These items became the creative building blocks of our ideas and projects. Practically anything from the dump could be used to build an airplane. We worked almost half of one summer on our lighter than air contraption and were convinced that with a little luck and a strong tailwind we could clear the trees behind Garrison’s tool shed. At the moment of truth a strange phenomenon occurred. A band of magical fairies appeared out of nowhere and gave us the final vote of confidence we needed to try out our flying machine. We were airborne for most of that morning and landed only when our Mother called us for lunch."