Friday, July 8, 2011

Talent - God's Gift or Revenge

     “I will serve God because I’m talented and it is my desire to serve him.  Why can’t I also have what I want?  I want you.  Is it so extraordinary that a great talent will also benefit from some rewards?”
            “Didn’t you say that we can’t serve two masters?  Well we have several masters now and none of them it seems, are pleased.”
            “If I write for God, I will do my best work.  Through that I will be awarded the commissions and freedom to escalate your career so that we can be left in peace to marry and love each other.  I love you, Fiora.  You must know that.”
            “I do.  If only love were enough.”
            “It is.  It has to be.”
            “You can say that when I was separated from my family, my beloved sister, Lucia.  Even now we steal moments for we don’t know when we will have another one.”
            “A man has a right in this new age to create his life.  I will give them my best work and I will be rewarded.”
            “You are already writing for an inferior vocal talent.  Tell me, hasn’t that compromised your work.  How have you reworked the tessitura to accommodate a small and limited voice?”
            “Let’s leave then.  We will make our way in another city.  We will marry and offer our services as a couple to other patrons.”
            “Can we go so far that we will escape the Medici’s powerful reach?  I think not.”
            “What do you suggest, Fiora?  You see no merit in my plans.”
            “I think that we are tied to our destinies and that they are not intersecting at the moment.”
            “You can give up so easily?”
            I pulled her to me with greater strength than I’d intended and crushed her to my chest.  I felt her pliant warmth against muscles and bone that strained against my garments.  I sought her lips’ welcoming embrace and felt powerful when I held her.  I willed Fiora to feel my confidence, wanted her to know that we were destined for each other.
            I heard Signora Moretti’s strident voice slice through the peaceful night.  She wanted Fiora to join them at the dinner table and they had it seemed, a guest.  Signore Claudio Monteverdi had been invited to join their evening meal.  He was already a composer of some note and my heart was paralyzed with the fear that he would be able to provide the future for my Fiora that I had envisioned offering her.  I cursed my circumstances and railed against God who had gifted me with music my greatest joy and then my greatest torment.  
            “Tell me that you won’t engage with him.  We belong together.”
            “My patrons expect me to treat him with the honor and dignity that his station deserves.”
            “Fine, fine, wash his feet if you will, but don’t give him any hope. Promise me.”
            “I have to go my love.  Remember that I love you.”
            I watched her slender form gracefully intersect the darkness as though it was water that parted in deference to her beauty.  I stood in the night shadows long after Fiora had left me.  I watched the candlelight’s shadows creating patterns on the walls.  I waited for her to return to me.  I vowed to do whatever was necessary so that we could be together.  And I learned to hate Signore Monteverdi, for he was at her side that night and I was not.

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