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and relentless gripe scares back the The features are irregular, but the smile messenger he would send forth. But transfigures them with a living light there is compensation for all things. which vanishes before you can seize it. Beethoven, disappointed, poor, and un- The impression I received through the recognized, wrote “ Es ist so schön das physique of the soul was that of color. Leben tausend mal zu leben." Aye, it is Force and richness of nature seemed indeed beautiful to live a thousandfold to me to speak from the brow and eye life. Blessed is he who is gifted with a and in the smile and voice. The young palate capable of appreciating all the lady is certainly not pretty, however, rich and delicate essences of existence. but possibly beautiful at times. I Many a fellow-creature, the pet of for- brought her, to-day, a nocturne of tune, might envy me the fine pleasure Chopin as a good text to the delicacy of those five minutes this afternoon in of her ear and sentiment. She read it the parlor in G square. Born to slowly at first, for her eyes are unpracmusic, and initiated by that birth into tised, but she seized the melody and the sacred mysteries of her high altar, modulation with a surprising quickthe gates of Paradise are open to me,
The execution was often defiand beyond, I taste the joys of disem- cient, but in spite of the imperfect bodied spirits while yet in finite chains. mechanism, she conveyed something of The celestial vision comes to most of us the fire and longing that breathed from in some form, perhaps, but only to the notes, and gave the delicate touches, those initiated by birth is the blessed where the soul in its impassioned conprivilege through music vouchsafed. fession bases its tenderest pulses, with That voice brings a nectar memory. a rare sensibility. I recognized her, in When shall I hear it again
all this, to be a true musik-kind ; but October 30th.—The lesson is over. It her musical education has been loose is an event to record, and events are and insufficient. It will require hard rare things with me. I have always study to perfect, but I feel a certain ridiculed journal-keeping as a merely keen pleasure in the anticipation of sentimental pastime, and now, behold! moulding such rare material. How the forced by my promise to L- I have nocturne delighted her. Never having begun the practice myself. Is it profit- heard it before, she felt in it all the exable though, this constant self-analysis citement of a fresh revelation. It is on paper - this maintaining in daily said that no piece can be appreciated numbers, forever “to be continued,” a upon first hearing. True in one sense. chronic history, of which one's self is There is in all true greatness a noble rethe perpetual hero, the pivot on which serve which yields only to the clearer vislife itself turns? It is very possible ion of the reverent seeker ; but the born that the occupation is selfish one, but musician holds in his own peculiar orHeaven knows few such are granted me. ganization the responsive pulses of all To begin with my event,"
," the lesson harmony, and through his fine sense in G- square. Firstly, I have seen flashes instantaneous recognition, though the poet-songstress face to face, and the fuller appreciation of the detail shall proceed to give a descriptive out- comes with subsequent study. In the line of her, to which I may refer here- course of the lesson, this afternoon, I after to quicken memory. The head is asked my young pupil if she really massive, but noble in form. The hair cared for music. She gave me a quick, is gathered loosely back from the brow searching glance, then said quite sim(not hauled and tortured by Fashion's ply, “I love it above all else. You will hand), and has that combination of rich not misunderstand me, and think me color and fineness of texture which be affected." “Do others think so?" I longs to a vital and refined organiza- asked. “Why do you ask me ?" she tion; it has, too, the natural wave replied; "you must know that music which denotes obstinacy and warmth. is at best but a worldly ambition, or a
pleasing entertainment in the ice-cream sickens me to see men gifted with noble line, to most people. I have never be- powers, who might be the pure apostles fore met any one to whom I could ex of a divine art, corrupting themselves press my real feeling about it.” I had with low habits, getting down on their suffered myself in the unsatisfied need knees to crawl through the loop-holes of musical sympathy, and knew how to of humbug to success, and sacrificing answer her. “It is true,” I said ; “there their artistic conscience to gain a hasty is no reverence for music nowadays; popularity. Out with them! They but guard your own worship sacredly. may win applause to tickle their vanity, You may yet become a priestess, per- and gold to fill their pockets; but they haps, if you only keep pure your faith.” are no true artists, because no true men. Her face kindled, and her eyes filled Not until the artist's only narcotic be with tears. Ah, what a revelation those the divine intoxication of the ever-livtears brought! I comprehended it, and ing waters, will there be the purest in. was deeply touched. Well, these les- spiration and the grandest work. For sons are going to be a true enjoyment Art must serve the Infinite. Only
I find in my new pupil a satis- through those laws which gravitate to faction seldom vouchsafed to me-that the Divine shall her servant be worthy of a positive musical affinity. But she to interpret her higher meaning. In will find me an exacting teacher. I the past, Art, to succeed, must be the shall put her through many a tedious slave of Royalty; and Apollo was repexercise, till the mechanical is no longer resented en perruque, à la Louis Qua& hinderance, as at present, but a me torze. The artist of the nineteenth dium. I wish I knew something more of century would make ber serve his own her history. She does not suit the gaudy private monarchy, but her contempt of house and her fashionable worldly rela- his trick shames and confuses him. Not tives. There is a fresh fragrance about until he go for magnetism, not needles, her as of new-mown hay and clover. I will she flash her prophetic messages wanted to hear her sing again, but through from pole to pole. For Beauty hesitated to ask her. I shall gain cour has no respect for private telegraphage some day, however, for hear her I wires. She will only serve the highest must.
spiritual liberty. But all talk about January 6th.—I moved, to-day, into a art is mere prattle, and we are but at pleasanter quarter of the city. Through the crowing of the cock in any real the kind recommendations of Dr. A - knowledge. My favorite pupil, Miss and the Irvings, I am constantly gain- Estelle Irving, is making fair progress. ing pupils, and find myself in a most The two hours of the week spent with hopeful frame of mind. Truly the mis- her are a pleasure, not a labor, and make sion of a music-teacher may be a noble me forget the drudgery of the other one. If he is faithful to his trust, he days. The lesson, however, is by no holds an important service in the work means all smoothness; it opens geneof a higher civilization. But here, in rally with many a dry exercise. America, music is a business held in no I hate them !" the young lady exclaims, very high repute. “He is only a poor and tries to hurry them on; but I permit Dutch musician," is a phrase which her no such indulgence, and, turning throws us beyond the pale of society back to the first page, require a careful into ignominy. Society is not entirely repetition. Sometimes she bears the to blame, however, that she is shy of ordeal with heroic patience ; again, she accepting musical artists as companions looks like a naughty child that deserves to the young people of either sex. the dark closet. This afternoon she When the artist forgets the noble laws was in a sensitively musical mood, and of the higher life, and descends into fluttered restively under the mechanism the poisonous atmosphere of the lower of the noble art. For her inattention I arena, he deserves to be an outcast. It inflicted the punishment of a few satiri
cal remarks delivered in my most chill come into the most intimate musical ing tone. I watch the effect with infi- communion with her, and the fire that nite amusement. With her sensitive, flows through my veins out to my 'finwarm organization, the quickened pulse ger-tips sends a kindred glow into her throbs to the surface, and she has noteyes and tones. In certain excited mo like me, the phlegm to hide its quiver. ments feel that a man might gladly So I have the advantage of her. If I die, and give up, if necessary, the promreprove her kindly, she softens, puts on ised white robe and harp of Paradise, the sheepskin, and promises with a to gain the love of a woman with such child's impulsiveness to do better. If a soul. She is so beautiful, too, when I am cold and critical, the nostril she sings. Her dark gray eye burns or quivers proudly, and the lips assume softens with the passing emotion, and à pretty moquerie. Sometimes she the whole face glows with the pure throws a direct glance at me, that says, light of passion. “Do you think I'm afraid of you ?”
“Ah! to hear or see her singing, again she turns my words to her own
Scarce I know which is divinest." advantage. As often she says nothing, but the attitude and expression affirm I could have fallen on my knees and that, though somewhat excited, she is wept tears of sweet delight, but it fearless. I like her in her little brist- would have been homage, not to herling moods, and, if I had the right, not to her—but to the holy Muse that would treat her as a naughty child speaks through her. Oh, what a should be treated—would take her in pleasure it is to sing to your accommy arms, tease her, laugh at her, and paniments !” she exclaimed this afterpossibly mingle kisses with the taunts. noon; "and how enchanting these songs But having no such pleasant right, I are! The idea of translating them! try to make my professorial dignity as The words and music of a people impressive and becoming as possible. should never be separated.” The cloud is dispelled, however, when “Certainly not," I replied. “In the the music begins. Ah, what a subtle true German ‘Lieder,' the poetry and language music is—& freemasonry in music are a unique inspiration. Heine itself. Its sacred secrets are forever used to go to Franz with his fresh concealed from the uninitiated, but its poem, and exclaim, “Ah, Robert, here children under all skies recognize its is a child of mine that must be marsign, and through the unmistakable ried.' And Franz comprehended the revelation claim each other.
soul of the child, and, touched and enJune 28th.-Since my last date, Miss kindled, married her to Tone. Often Irving has dismissed her Italian singing- the very inspiration of the music is teacher, and taken me in his stead—& born of the poetic glow that burns in change which I certainly approve of. the poem. The light and shade, the This afternoon I brought her that ex- flash, the tint, are modulated to the quisite tone-wreath, Schumann's Opus words; the very temperature is the same. No. 48. I was completely charmed Franz's songs are neither descriptive with her interpretation. She forms, nor dramatic. They are mostly moods, with the quick insight of a poet, a dis- enwrapped in themselves. When listentinct conception of the peculiar signifi- ing to his music, you float away with a cance of each individual song, and em- dreamy, swaying tide, where no positive bodies that meaning into a living and outline is visible, no destined haven in eloquent message. It is a dangerous sight. On and on you are borne business, however, this duett perform- through an atmosphere whose color ance. We cannot enjoy what is dearest and perfume permeate your very being, to us with another in so subtle a sym- filling you with a vague hope and mispathy, and not be stirred to the quick. giving which is half delight, half pain." When playing her accompaniments, I “ And that divided pain and pleasure
you Germans call Wehmuth - do you this. Dear Journal ! I see that my favornot ?" she asked ; but before I could re ite pupil is the almost constant topic ply, she said, with a sudden way peculiar of these pages. I return from her luxuto her, “Do you like ballads ? “ Cer- rious home to my naked room, and tainly," I replied ; "they are the domes make a minute record of the hour spent tic tone-poetry of a nation. Indeed, I in her presence, to gain a double experilike good music wherever I find it. ence of it. I admire ber; yes, there is The history of a people's life-experi- no denying it. She appeals to my ences is written in its music.” “It is tastes and gratifies my artistic instincts. so refreshing,” she exclaimed, “to find a She has, too, a fine breadth and indemusician who is not bigoted in his art. pendence, which stimulates like the Most of them affect an exclusiveness keen breath of mountain-air. She has which is as narrow as the sectarianism grown up like a wild plant, with no of the churches. And yet it seems to wise hand to prune and direct; but the me that the artist, above all others, plant has a rich juice in its veins, and should have the power to perceive bears no puny blossom. The man who Beauty where the duller sense finds only takes this woman to his heart must be à fog of commonplaces." “Yes," I vastly strong, patient, and tender. She apswered, “ the true artist should be a will inspire, enlarge, and refine him, true democrat. But it is getting late," and give him divine emotions. She I added, looking at my watch. I turned will also sting, torment, and contradict from the eager face, and the following him. He may be charmed with the moment found me on the pavement. friskiness of the wild merlin, but he Here, at last, is a true woman in the will find her hard of management. larger sense. We men tire of the eternal The task would give full play to his sweet woman who smiles forever at our
powers. An attractive, challenging elbow. We want in woman a touch of task! It makes the blood flow swister grandeur and fire to rouse, mingled to dwell on it. Heavens ! am I mad ? with the tender that softens. The Come with me, my Journal, to the mirmaiden of G-square has a rare What do you see there? Is that scope of nature. With the brain to grave, colorless, commonplace face like grasp great ideas, she unites the glow ly to charm an artistic maiden? Now of genius and a fine delicacy of intui turn from the contemplation of the pertion. She possesses, too, that rarest of son, to the surroundings of this lord of charms among the modern editions of creation, And this is the home he young ladyhood-perfect health, Ye would offer the Peri of his choice ! gods! what a privilege is the acquaint- Now, if I were fortunate and wellanceship of a woman who is never favored – but I am a fool, even in afflicted with indigestion ! To come in thought to couple our destinies. It is contact with a clean soul acting through well that an inexorable Fate divides us. & clean body. Migraine, with its She stands over my shoulder now as I inevitable languors; the constant weari- write, a smile of ineffable scorn on her ness which assumes constantly reclining grim visage. attitudes; the capability of fainting at February 24th.-To-day I brought any required moment, are qualifications Miss Estelle some of Bach's music. She apparently quite unknown to this nine was quite unacquainted with it. I teenth-century Hebe. Why do the artis- placed before her the “ Alemande” of tic heroes and heroines of to-day claim Suite No. 2 in C minor, worthy to be morbidity as the prerogative of genius? the ancestress of all pure sonatas. She Why are the disciples of the arts, who caught its spirit with her usual insight, have continual gastric complaint, con and accented the rhythm, which in sidered more gifted and poetical than Bach marks the ebb and flow of emo those who are so unfortunate as to have tion, with a marvellous nicety. Intuisound stomachs ? A vital question, tion taught her what study reveals to
few. Then I gave her the second only the imperfect instruments of the minuet of Opus No. 1-a musical dew- Divine purpose. Among the instrudrop. Ah, thou great Sebastian I even mental performances was Beethoven's we, who so love and reverence thee, can duett in F for violin and piano. The never scale the grandeur of thy heights performers executed it neatly, but its or fathom the pathos of thy depths. .I inner meaning was Chaldaic to them. found, upon my return this evening, an My God! when will revelation come? invitation from Mrs. Irving to a musi. When will men and women be pure cal soirée at her house next week. Do and great enough to interpret the gloI owe the honor of this attention to the rious gospel of this divine tone-prophet ? recent discovery made by this worldly His works are becoming fashionable lady, viz., that our family-name bore now; but how seldom we hear a viroriginally the prefix of a “ Von ?” tuoso who reproduces his music in its
March 2d.—The soirée is over, and real simplicity and grandeur, without was considered a success, I believe, paralyzing its nerve, without extinguishThere were various musical perform- ing the celestial fire that burned in the ances, many of which were unmeaning, Titan-master's soul. The prima donna but all were followed by lively plaudits, of the evening was a young lady with and ecstatic murmurs of “How sweet!” a clear, powerful voice, who certainly “How delightful !” Vocalists and in deserved credit for the dexterity of her strumentalists proceeded to their per- roulades and the purity of her trills. formance with an air that evinced they This tight-rope dancing of an agile considered they were gracing music, larynx gains for the performer a deand not vice versd--a troupe of modern cided popularity; but does the heart Jack Horners, each with his especial beat quicker at the perfect mechanism ? plum, and each in his own especial style A brilliant execution is certainly a most heralding forth his own dimensions. admirable thing, but one would be willThe hero of the evening was a young ing to forego it somewhat for a little American who has lately discovered more poetry and originality of concephimself a genius. When called upon tion. Most singers learn their song by to perform, he took his seat at the rote, commit to memory the spots piano with an air worthy of Gott where they must scream, gasp, sigh, or schalk, and sent beaming smiles into smile, and the thick-skinned public his audience in the lingering process of accepts the sham sensibility for a reality. divesting his hands of their kid cover And yet, how wretched the semblance. ings. Of course, he first attacked the We do not realize it till some genuine instrument in a series of dashing origi touch of Nature rouses the real heart of nal (1) chords-(why must we always humanity. Thank God, the modern have this preliminary splurge ?)—and Prometheus, though somewhat tamed then proceeded to his piece. He played by civilization, is not yet in chains. his own compositions in preference to Miss Estelle sang an Italian aria this those of his brother masters; and his evening; for she knew that a simple choice seemed to gain him an almost song of Franz or Schumann was too reverent admiration. He has faculty, pure and significant for the comprehenbut lacks that surest sign of real worth, sion of a stylish American audience. modesty. He will be popular, however, How charmingly she looked. She was for he will descend to Humbug, and dressed in a simple white muslin, her will live by, not for, Art. I watched only ornament a damask rose gleaming him as the specimen of a type, and lost in her hair; but the glow of its tint myself in thoughts of the departed was not warmer than the light in her great ones, who went about among men eye, or brighter than her smile. Yes, unknown, unsought, bearing in their she is beautiful-with a beauty that souls the consciousness of a holy power, torments while it fascinates; for you but humbly acknowledging themselves can neither seize nor explain it. My