2013-08-29

I am an unusual thing


I am an unusual thing.
I have no soul and no body.
One cannot see me
but can hear me.
I do not exist for me alone.
Only a human being can give me life
as often as he wishes.
And my life is only of short duration,
for I die almost at the moment I am born.

And so, according to man's caprice,
I may live and die untold times a day.
To those who give me life I do nothing,
but those on whose account I am born
I leave with painful sensations
for the short duration of my life;
of my life till I depart.

I am appointed to a situation
which will afford me
leisure to write music
just to please myself.
And I feel capable of doing something
worthy of the fame I've acquired.
But instead, I must die.

Mozart's words three days before his death - from a reported conversation in English between Constanze Mozart and V. Novello.

Mozart 252, Michael Nyman, 2008