No one deserved it more than he did. No one fought harder, or more fiercely, or against greater odds.
No one saw as clearly that triumph is a demon. That fury sings. That beauty, at its heart, is an act of will.
No one learnt at greater cost how wild perfection is, how savage - how it destroys those who nurse it, must be tamed by brute force.
And yet, listening to these final works - these quartets with their voices that meditate on silence, these sonatas where the piano is an animal set free - is it possible not to envy him? Envy him neither his suffering nor his glory, but what lies beyond both - the knowledge that moves beneath these pieces, informs them, inspires them. The sure-footed intuition of a mind at peace.
We may never be old enough for this music. We may not live so long, or so intensely. But it comforts us to know such harmony is possible: a season of soft promises, of beauty both ripe and bare.