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Leonard Cohen - Flame

Article - Romance, regrets and notebooks in the freezer: Leonard Cohen’s son on his father’s final poems

 

Enjoyable article , I remember how the kids grand father would talk the time he met Leonard Cohen in Montreal. Memories, he lived his music and it got  his spirit moving. I rather like many of Cohen’s songs, not realizing the poetic side of him. Reflecting know, it makes perfect sense. Maybe I should revisit my own poem book. 

Was he, in the end, a musician or a poet? A grave philosopher or a grim sort of comedian? A cosmopolitan lady’s man or a profound, ascetic seeker? Jew or Buddhist? Hedonist or hermit? Across his 82 years, the Montreal-born Leonard Cohen was all of these things – and in his posthumous book of poetry, given the Lawrentian title The Flame by his son Adam, all sides of the man are present.”

 

Will have to get this book for the library and glean some inspiration from it. Maybe I get two and send a copy to Maurice for his enjoyment. 

Timothy Ross

#ImprovingFutures

“He’d call himself slow. He’d write poems about how Leonard Cohen was a lazy bastard living in a suit”

Adam Cohen

Happens to the Heart

I was always working steady
But I never called it art
I was funding my depression
Meeting Jesus reading Marx
Sure it failed my little fire
But it’s bright the dying spark
Go tell the young messiah
What happens to the heart

There’s a mist of summer kisses
Where I tried to double-park
The rivalry was vicious
And the women were in charge
It was nothing, it was business
But it left an ugly mark
So I’ve come here to revisit
What happens to the heart

I was selling holy trinkets
I was dressing kind of sharp
Had a pussy in the kitchen
And a panther in the yard
In the prison of the gifted
I was friendly with the guard
So I never had to witness
What happens to the heart

I should have seen it coming
You could say I wrote the chart
Just to look at her was trouble
It was trouble from the start
Sure we played a stunning couple
But I never liked the part
It ain’t pretty, it ain’t subtle
What happens to the heart

Now the angel’s got a fiddle
And the devil’s got a harp
Every soul is like a minnow
Every mind is like a shark
I’ve opened every window
But the house, the house is dark
Just say Uncle, then it’s simple
What happens to the heart

I was always working steady
But I never called it art
The slaves were there already
The singers chained and charred
Now the arc of justice bending
And the injured soon to march
I lost my job defending
What happens to the heart

I studied with this beggar
He was filthy he was scarred
By the claws of many women
He had failed to disregard
No fable here no lesson
No singing meadowlark
Just a filthy beggar blessing
What happens to the heart

I was always working steady
But I never called it art
I could lift, but nothing heavy
Almost lost my union card
I was handy with a rifle
My father’s .303
We fought for something final
Not the right to disagree

Sure it failed my little fire
But it’s bright the dying spark
Go tell the young messiah
What happens to the heart

June 24, 2016

Flying Over Iceland

over Reykjavik, the “smokey bay” 
where W.H. Auden went
to discover the background
of all our songs,
where I myself was received
by the Mayor and the President
(600 miles an hour
30,000 feet
599 miles an hour
my old street number on Belmont Ave) 
where I, a second-rater
by any estimation,
was honoured by the noblest
and handsomest people of the West 
served with lobster
and strong drink,
and I never cared about eyes
but the eyes of the waitress
were so alarmingly mauve
that I fell into a trance
and ate the forbidden shellfish

I Pray for Courage

I pray for courage
Now I’m old
To greet the sickness
And the cold

I pray for courage
In the night
To bear the burden
Make it light

I pray for courage
In the time
When suffering comes and
Starts to climb

I pray for courage
At the end
To see death coming
As a friend

The Flame is published by Canongate on 2 October.

Hallelujah- Leonard Cohen London

 

Order Book

https://www.amazon.ca/Flame-Leonard-Cohen/dp/077102441X

 

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Comments

  • Order book on Amazon

    The Flame: Leonard Cohen: 9780771024412: Books - Amazon.ca
    The Flame: Leonard Cohen: 9780771024412: Books - Amazon.ca
  • Anthem

     

    ring the bells that still can ring

    firget your perfect offering

    there is a crack in everything 

    That’s how the light gets in

     

    Do not dwell on what has passed away or. What is yet to be

     

     

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