I was thinking of feeling and shining golden joy in the happy fortune of whom we love.
Through her husband Robert, virtuoso pianist Clara Wieck Schumann first came to know young Johannes Brahms as his patroness, admiring his creative genius and writing in her diary that he seemed “sent straight from God.” Their friendship blossomed over time, and the tenderness and variable heat revealed in their decades of correspondence offers a glimpse at a love that defies classification. That he adored her was clear, as was the warmth and strength she derived from him. Through the tragedy of losing her husband to mental illness and the daunting burden of supporting their eight children on her own, Clara counted on her connection with Johannes to give her the emotional sustenance she needed to push forward. As the clamor of his growing fame pressed him, Johannes too was nourished by her love, finding in her sweetness and beauty a serene anchorage for his soul.