Children, like animals, have a language all their own. It takes getting down on their level and intently listening and watching to begin to understand it. The major difference is that while animals are always speaking "animal" even when we don't know what they are saying, the language of children is even more esoteric. Like fairies and other magical creatures, the inner world of children seems to evaporate if it comes in direct contact with that of an adult. Still, there are ways to glimpse it. One must be very quiet, so as not to spook them and to stay on the periphery and observe. I can capture their language, their world, better with my lens than my eyes because it is so fleeting. it hints at the future, of the people they will become.
In the moments when their secret world becomes visible, there is a maturity, a strength, and yet, also a vulnerability that makes adults uncomfortable. We often prefer our animals and our children to be cute, cuddly, juvenile. They are more complex than this. They have inner lives that we are not privy to -- thoughts, emotions and ways of playing and being that are foreign to us. The miracle with both children and animals is that sometimes, somehow we connect with what we do not fully understand.