There’s been a lot of bad news out there lately. An awful, overwhelming, immobilizing lot of it. I’ve been trying to wrap my head around the magnitude of the crisis in the Horn of Africa, of what it means for us to execute a death row inmate within reasonable doubt, of suicide bombings, of constant economic downturn and my “lost” generation, of whether or not my small donations to this and that make a real difference…
I don’t know what I was expecting when I tuned in to this NPR interview with Maurice Sendak today, but his words on “the fragility of life, the irrationality of life,” and “the comedy” of it really struck a chord with me. It’s a comedy I’ll never understand, but one I also hope I never stop finding things to laugh about. It seems to me that the only way we can really make sense of the bad news is to celebrate the good; to treasure the small victories and the everyday wonders, and to remember our humanity.
Mr. Sendak summed it up in a few moving sentences that just about brought me to tears:
There’s something I’m finding out as I’m aging: that I am in love with the world. As I look right now, as we speak together, out my window in my studio, and I see my trees, my beautiful, beautiful maples that are hundreds of years old…I can see how beautiful they are, I can take time to see how beautiful they are. It is a blessing to get old. It is a blessing to find the time to do the things, to read the books, to listen to the music…Oh god, there are so many beautiful things in the world which I will have to leave when I die!
I hope you get a few minutes to listen to the interview, and that it lifts you up a little as it did me. I also sincerely hope you stumble upon some good news this week!
*click images for full view//kodak 200//canon eos rebel k2 +50mm lens