I just heard the most wonderful radio interview with children's writer and illustrator Maurice Sendak.
In the interview, Sendak shares this wisdom with listeners: "Live your life! Live your life! Live your life!"
Terry Gross of NPR's Fresh Air spoke to Sendak about his new picture book, Bumble-ardy. It's the story of a pig whose family frowns on fun. Sendak tells Gross about his own growing up. He recalls that his parents were a little like Bumble-ardy's. Sendak credits his older brother, Jack, who was also a writer, for "saving his life." Together, the two boys escaped into a world of stories and drawings.
Sendak talks about many important things in this interview. He says that during the creative process, "things come to you without your knowing exactly what they mean." He also talks about the difficulty of aging. For him, the hardest part is losing people he loves, including the man who was his partner for some 50 years.
Despite the inevitability of such losses, Sendak describes himself as "a happy old man." He finds comfort in the beauty of the maple trees outside his apartment in New York. "I am," he says, "in love with the world."
To hear the entire interview, click here. It'll make you glad to be alive.