Classical Haiku: Franz Schubert

Endless melodies -
the offerings from your muse
on your young altar.

The Romantics had a tendency to burn out.

This was true of poets as well as composers, and in the world of music Franz Schubert’s tragically brief life is typical of the Romantic phenomenon of producing large quantities of glorious art in a frenzy of creative inspiration, then dropping dead.

Maybe I shouldn’t put it so bluntly, but let’s face it: Schubert’s death at age 31 after composing and composing and composing hundreds of phenomenal songs, any number of dramatic works, large quantities of piano sonatas and other chamber works and nine brilliant symphonies smacks of working his fingers to the bone. He had to have been tired. Maybe it was just time for him to go home.

Of course, there are other stories about what caused Schubert’s death, and we need not rehearse them here.

I, for one, rejoice that his muse was willing to work around the clock to see that Schubert’s incredible lyric gift found expression in all those songs and all that great instrumental music.

Today’s Classical Haiku goes to Schubert, tunesmith like no other, whose muse gave us the bounty of his gifts for a while, but got tired of sharing.

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