27 December 1778

pages 18-19

Herr Mozart!

Apparently you could not bear to stop composing except to tell me to be a good girl & train my voice properly. I should think by now that you, of all people, would know how good I truly am. Perhaps you cannot imagine how it is to be the one who remains behind. You who can as easily delight the whole court of Versailles as button your vest before a walk in the garden with a pretty countess, no doubt.

You must know, sir, that I am as sorry to hear of your mother’s unfortunate death as I am to hear that you refused the post of court organist at Versailles. I can’t bear to think now of how we could have dazzled the French with our brilliance…or how you could have dazzled me if you had only sent me a little composition to sing, or a letter – if you had saved something of yourself for me instead of pouring it all into your music. I think you loved me, but I felt like one of your childish students…

I wanted to be a star like you.
And I will. I must think of my future, since you will not think of it for me. I am sure I will marry someone famous who will treat me like the lovely jewel that I am.

I will sing.
And be known for my own voice.

Of course I do wish good things for you, but I do not wish to wait forever, while exciting things happen to other people.

Oh for heaven’s sake!
I can’t send this – I might as well tell this very understanding piece of paper that I did recognize you when you came back at Christmas. I wanted to run to you & wrap myself inside that red French mourning robe, so you wouldn’t have to be alone with your grief… But the
darkness in your eyes frightened me… You seemed to be very far away even though you were standing right in front of me.
I am so sorry.


(Exerpts from Letters to Mozart © 2006 Kristin Serafini.)