Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Revisiting Maurice Sendak

Maurice Sendak is known as an internationally renowned prize-winning children's book author and illustrator but he also has a message for adults too.
When children read his most famous book, "Where The Wild Things Are," they run around and play as if they are monsters, just like the ones in Sendak's book.  Spontaneously and instantly, children enter Sendak's world with love and abandon.
Adults may want to join the children in their play but their "adultness" sometimes holds them back.  "Oh, that's a child's book" or "I can't play like that" or "I shouldn't play like that" are some of the many things adults think after reading Sendak's book.
But Sendak's message to adults is one that children get right away: Say "I can" not "I can't."
One of my son's great friends sent this YouTube video to me so that I could share it with my readers.
It is a touching interview that NPR's Terry Gross did with Maurice Sendak near the end of his rich life.  Sadly, Sendak died last May at the age of 83 from complications of a stroke. (
In this wonderful NPR interview, Sendak talks about "the creative man" but more importantly he poignantly addresses aging and what life feels like for him at this stage.
To me, Sendak's message is short and sweet: Live your life!, Live your life!, Live your life!
Please click on the above to have a listen and watch the accompanying "wild" illustrations of artist Christoph Niemann.

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