Where the Wild Things Are,Maurice Sendak R.I.P. Astrology of artist/writer’s life by Tara greene

I felt sad to hear that famed children’s author and illustrator Maurice Sendak passed away May 8 at the not too shabby age of 83.

Most famous for writing and illustrating Where the Wild Things Are in 1963, the book was a modern classic turning the tables from “nice, safe, Disney-fied, squeaky clean, pabulum type of sugar-coated kids Lit. A movie based on W.T. W. T. A. was released in 2009.

He authored 22 books, and illustrated almost a hundred books.

His other most infamous book is In the Night Kitchen first published in 1970. It was heavily censored for the drawings of a young naked boy running through the pages of the book.

 Sendak  was born of Polish Jewish immigrants and he described his childhood as “terrible” because all of his extended family had been killed in The Holocaust. He loved to read as a child then became inspired to draw after seeing Walt Disney’s Fantasia as a child. He was one of the early National Board of  Advisers for Sesame Street. He produced animated TV productions, and collaborated with other playwrights  and had recent successes in the past 10 years.

His personal Gods are Herman Melville creator of Moby Dick, Emily Dickinson and Mozart. Sendak was quoted as saying ” If there’s a purpose for life, it was for me to hear Mozart.”

Where the Wild Things Are sold over twenty million copies.

I remember reading it over and over to my son Elijah when he was a little boy,I loved reading to him, and it was one of his favourite stories. The story is about a young boy who proudly goes off to have adventures in his room because he is being punished and given a time out,with no dinner, by his mother for acting out.

The boy becomes King of the Wild Things, monsters on an island, but then gets lonely and tired of being King and comes back after “a year and a day” to his room, where he finds his mother has left him his dinner, “and it was still warm.” 

So lets find out who Maurice Sendak was. A Gemini, born June 10 1928  in Brooklyn New York.I have no exact birth time so have set up his chart on a “natural house” system with Zero degrees Aries as the Ascendant.

A Gemini born with Venus conjunct the Sun. Venus is the Goddess of Art, and the North Node is also conjunct to Venus at 9 degrees of Gemini. Maurice’s highest spiritual goal was to communicate, that’s GEMINI. Gemini is the ever youthful, Peter Pan, puer archetype who never wants to grow up, who lives in Never Never land or any imaginative fantasy.

Gemini is ruled by Mercury the Messenger of the Gods, the sign rules all forms of communications and writing. Mercury also rules Virgo, and Sendak had his natal JUNO- symbol looks like a magic wand, some say a toilet brush, tsk tsk.  JUNO is an Asteroid Goddess, and her name symbolizes a specific FEMININE form of genius, which connotes the masculine form of said genius.

Mercury the ruler of Gemini is in Cancer,conjunct to Pluto Lord of the Underworld.

Another famed children’s book illustrator Art Spiegelman, interviewed and illustrated Sendak for a New Yorker article from 1993. In this article Sendak stated that

“CHILDHOOD is CANNIBALS and PSYCHOTICS vomiting in your mouth.” 

Art Speigelman Sendak

 A pretty heavy but totally bang on illustration of someone born with Mercury in Cancer, the sign of the mother, nurturing, food, receptivity, and Pluto the shadows, the death eaters, the power and control secret freaks. Dead on. Mortifying.

Sendak’s Moon was in very dreamy,imaginative Pisces, planet of all creators, chameleons,boundless. If this chart is correct then the Moon is in the 12th house, where Pisces naturally is, and shows how much of the family secrets, the Holocaust. Sendak was writing about and through in his works.

He was born with Neptune in a wide opposition to the Moon in Leo, sign of fame, leadership. Moon in Pisces is soft, feminine, vulnerable, compassionate, spirital, can be addictive type of personality. The Moon is also opposite JUNO, the genius in hard-working exacting, perfectionist, down to earth, analytical, world- server sign of Virgo. An exacting artist writer and illustrator, Sendak produced a huge body of work over his lifetime.

Leo is the sign of the child, role-playing, acting. Sendak was the King, staunch defender and champion of Youth,  especially strong-willed children, who would not bow down to authoritarian parents’ wills, for which he was both { GEMINI} applauded and maligned for.

Born with Uranus in early Aries in square to Mercury, giving him a revolutionary fighting energy in communications.

He has Mars, Aries ruler at 18 degrees in square to Pluto, Sendak must have been a very energetic person. Very powerful, a naturally aggressive person.Who would speak his mind.

in Jan of 2012 Sendak was interviewd on The Colbert report calling Colbert and idiot and tearing into Newt Gingrich saying: ” But Newt Gingrich is an idiot. … There is something so hopelessly gross and vile about him that it’s hard to take him seriously. So let’s not take him seriously.”

Here’s that interview:


Born with Jupiter and Chiron in Taurus this made him sensual, direct, probably a simple man in some ways, never far from his roots, strong, stubborn, a good earner, appreciates Art, Jupiter expands whatever sign its’ in. Venus rules Taurus so again we’re back to Venus patroness of the arts in child-like Gemini, the sign of the twin soul.

Last but not least SATURN, representing the father, is opposite Venus, Sendak’s Sun and his north node, at 15 degrees of  Sagittarius Retrograde.

Sendak said his dad was one of his early inspirations for writing children’s books. Saturn Retrograde is a karmic signature. Not shown on the chart is Sendak’s South Node, his past at 9 degrees of Sagittarius conjunct Saturn. 9 degrees of Sagittarius in Tropical Western Astrology is exactly on the Fixed Star Antares, in the Sidereal constellation of Scorpio, whose name means rival of Mars because of its huge size and red color,and also denotes the Angel Uriel.

I’d say that Sendak was a great military warrior in a past life, who may have misused power { SCORPIO} who came into this life to repay a debt to the world by following his North Node conjunct to Venus,by being an artist warrior and communicator brandishing his pen and ink in defense of the innocent child, who couldn’t speak up and defend himself as much before Sendak came along to initiate and liberate the rights of the child to express his or her power, will and that which grown ups have banished to their own unconscious state, the freedom of self-expression so that the child can express all their feelings fully, safely.

The planet Uranus is exactly where it was when Sendak was born. He was experiencing his Uranus return and he left this world quickly, a Uranus energy from a heart attack. Chiron, the Wounded healer is exactly at 9 degrees of Pisces in exact square to Sendak’s North and South nodes.  Mars is also directly opposite Sendak’s Moon and in square aspect to his Nodes. Pluto Lord of death is also opposite to Sendak’s Mercury in Cancer. All of these planets show fateful indications.

Sendak left a great legacy. Children will continue to read identify with and appreciate Sendak’s Where the Wild Things are and many of his other books for always.

read the Art Spiegelman illustration and interview in the New York Times ttp://www.newyorker.com/archive/1993/09/27/1993_09_27_080_TNY_CARDS_000364070

P.S. Sendak was gay, and lived with his partner, psychoanalysts Dr. Eugene Glynn for over 50 years till his death in 2007.  He never told his parents. Sendak said “All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy. They never, never, never knew.”He didn’t want to upset them. There is certainly many what I would call hermaphroditic influences in his natal chart, Gemini, Venus, Saturn opposition, lots of Cancer Mother,  moon in Pisces feminine energy.Pluto in Cancer, family skeletons, secrets. Can you tell if someone is gay from their astrology chart?  There would be indicators to be sure.

another review of Sendak’s work here: http://www.wired.com/underwire/2012/…

It’s very intersting here that I get to “know” people through their astrolology charts. I reallly enjoy doing these memorializing astrology write-ups.

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