Often, when people talk about Chopin, they talk about his Nocturnes which resonant with too many souls; or the Mazurkas hardly fail to raise our spirits. When it finally comes to his polonaise, most get held by “Heroic” and would rather to construct the link between the piece with the French revolution. Of course the long pieces of Concertos brings the musician fame and money. But I’ve learnt it first through a melancholy youth story.
I was sitting in front of my 90s Yamaha keyboard with Z when he played No.12 in B flat major.
“This is my favorite one. Chopin wrote this when he was 7.”
“I could see that from the cheerful tone, sounds like a kid, but slightly over-mature for a 7 years old.”
“How hearty your comment is.” he replied sarcastically, “You’d better go to Concerto No.1 Second movement. You know Chopin wrote that for someone he secretly loves?”
So I learnt when Chopin wrote the Concerto No.1, he was 20 years old. It reminds me of Ma jeunesse ne fut qu’un ténébreux orage. He must fail to see any romantic possibilities with another, or with George Sand, the other.
“So how it ends?” by that time, I never knew any of Chopin, not even mention his personal life.
“Nothing. He loved; he composed; but he only planted this love deeply in his heart and never told. It’s not until he dead did the girl found out she had been loved by him and herself the one inspired the Second movement which rarely fails to awake memories of youth.”
“Well, bummer.” I tried to ignore his apparent implication, “He really should let her know. I say giving it a shot prevents the future regret.”
“That’s what you’ve done. But who’s feeling like a mess now?”
“Shut up, it’ll pass.” I snapped, very uncertain about my reckless claim.
“Anyway, Chopin, taking this emotional and sentimental romance with him, later on lived happily with his new lover(s) for ten years.”
“So, I say you’d better let it go right now and start with someone new.” he smirked.
Later on Z went back to San Jose for his normal and endless work. We talked more about Chopin, Hummel, and Mozart. He introduced more albums and single pieces to me, but none draws me like the Second movement does. I always feel there was something left out about my unspeakable feelings.
One day I was listening to Polonaise No.12 and Concerto No.1 together again, it suddenly struck me that this is how youth coming after childhood. The two pieces are marks of his life, both out of instinctual and pure emotions; the latter is like a Rest to the former, a line once crossed means a claim to end the childhood.
But Traversé çà et là par de brillants soleils.
I guess this is when I found why my defense is invalid and my hope insincere.