Like the rest of the reading world, we’re mourning Maurice Sendak today. Whether we were aware of it or not, his work shaped all of our childhoods in ways large and small. Generations of children (and grownups, too) have been impacted by the otherworldly, dark, memorable landscapes of Sendak’s books. And, of course, by Sendak himself.
We learned from Maurice Sendak that childhood can be scary, that sometimes adventures aren’t all they’re cracked up to be, and that imagination can always take us somewhere new and strange. We learned that dreams are both odd and glorious (like life). We learned that children are smart, capable, and independent. We learned that we can take charge of our own destinies and wrangle our own wild things, real and imagined.
Maurice Sendak left us with an unparalleled legacy of storytelling and memories of his endearing grumpiness. He’d probably hate it that we referred to him as endearing, but that’s how we feel.
Thanks for teaching us about life, Mr. Sendak.