The Musorgsky Reader: A Life of Modeste Petrovich Musorgsky in Letters and Documents

By Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky; Jay Leyda et al. | Go to book overview

classico, in accordance with my musical studies at that time. And that's how my Intermezzo was born into the world . . ."--VLADIMIR STASOV


27. To MILI BALAKIREV, St. Petersburg

11 March [1862] Village of Volok

I write the andante.77

I am splendidly situated, so far in good health and in comparatively good spirits.

I lead the life of a respectable person--go to bed at eleven, rise at eight and this schedule is proving very pleasant for me.--Snow, wind and frost. I wait with impatience for spring--to begin the cure--it's time to start my brain working, let's stop fooling around; I must work, I must do things, and one can do it only when the spirit's in a normal disposition, in a delirious condition one can only tremble, create fantasies and squander one's strength in vain--in its way it is a kind of masturbating--only spiritually.

How is your business in reference to the concerts and is Heirarch Dubinstein scheming or not?78 Write me about it.--Has Korsik finished his scherzo79 and is it good? (One must assume it is!) Write about this also--all these things are extremely interesting to know.

When one changes one's atmosphere and surroundings--one feels refreshed; the past becomes purified, standing in bold relief and then one can bravely analyze what one has lived through. Having realized this now that I've gone to the country--I see that, although I haven't run away from work, I have--with my Russian laziness--done little; I do not have any particular faith in my talent, although I don't have any doubt of it; therefore I want to work according to my strength, and I will, but I am searching for other activities where I could make myself useful. Moreover, I am discovering in myself something that is already obvious--a kind of looseness, a softness; you called it doughiness, I now recall, and I was a little hurt, because dough has the quality of retaining the impression of dirty fingers as well as clean ones.--However, I intend to get rid of this softness, it knocks me out;

____________________
77
For the symphony, mentioned in Letter 21 and following letters.
78
It is now difficult to say whether Rubinstein plotted against Balakirev or Balakirev imagined that he did.
79
For Rimsky-Korsakov's first symphony.

-39-

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