There are even pictures of people harvesting words! How is that possible? In medieval Europe there was a character named Titivillus, who went around with a basket sweeping up syllables of words spoken carelessly, dropped thoughtlessly, or skipped over. Manuscript pictures show Titivillus collecting letters in his basket — big letters like those on movie theater marquees. Near him there are people sweeping streets and sidewalks, or tending fruit and veggie plots around town squares.
Let’s bring Titivillus into our orbits. He’s happy to dump out his basket so we can, more or less at random, pick out some letters. Letters spell words. Words rhyme. But not all words that rhyme are spelled as similarly as they sound. Rhyme and time, for example. Maybe we see spelling variation as a crime. Could we mime, like in charades? In cultures where people do a lot of story telling, people rhyme time and fine. The vowel -- i — is the same, and the consonants — m and n — are both what linguists call “liquids,” that is, they can flow to go on for as long as a breath holds. Words with one identical sound and a two similar sounds “feel” like rhymes and appeal to our ears.
Try Titivillus’s harvest of letters. Turn the harvest into whatever you’d like. By Halloween you may have a few tricks and treats of sound to share.