Forgiveness Friday: Fan Mail to Sendak

Did your parents send you out in warm summer rain and force you to dance?

Mine did.

Did your parents tell you to get lost because they were busy reading their mystery books or the New York Times?

Ours did.

Did your parents, some how, some way, help give you the confidence to write a letter to Maurice Sendak with the expectation that he would write back?

Mine did.

And he did. I was a senior in college and felt faint when opening my mail box.

Among replies to the fan mail that I have sent over the years, I have gotten hand written replies from Lou Jacobs (famous Ringling Brothers clown), Maurice Sendak (author of In the Night Kitchen) and most recently, Martin Sheen (lead actor in the recent movie The Way).

Not only did these gentlemen return a reply soon after I wrote my letter of thanks and interest, each of them wrote back by hand.

Who DOES that any more?

And…why me? Mine was certainly not the only letter they received in the mail on whatever day their agents let the letters pass through.

I think, much like I said to a neighbor and new friend yesterday who was so kind as to give our son two hours of wonderful stories of his childhood,

I think that sometimes the Holy Spirit knows who and what we need far better than we do.

In the same way that my son Joe needed Edward’s advice and insight about prejudice yesterday, perhaps Edward needed an eager young boy who is willing to listen closely to what he has to say.

” ’tis a glory hallelujah to believe…”

“…we shall only know the blessing of our founders sweet caressing when they ring the golden bells for you and me.”

~ When They Ring the Golden Bells by Dan­i­el de Mar­belle

* P.S. I was looking for a version of Emmy Lou Harris singing this song, and stumbled instead on to one of my mother’s favorites: Mahalia Jackson. If you click on the song title you can listen to Mahalia on YouTube. ~ Enjoy!


1 thought on “Forgiveness Friday: Fan Mail to Sendak

  1. Pingback: Forgiveness Friday: Fan Mail to Sendak « Katherine O. Cooper: Writing Portfolio

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