Friday, November 11, 2016 – If we believe in the poet, we believe that in death we will find those that we loved and that left before us.Leonard Cohen, the reluctant pop star, has died at 82. Mr. Cohen, a Canadian poet and novelist, abandoned a promising literary career to become one of the foremost songwriters of the contemporary era.
His best-known song may well be Hallelujah popularized in the animated hit Shrek.
In “You Want It Darker,” the title track of his final studio album that was released last month, he sings, “I’m ready, my Lord.” The song is very reflective of Mr. Cohen deep religious beliefs. Listen to the album here:
Rolling Stone reports:
“It is with profound sorrow we report that legendary poet, songwriter and artist, Leonard Cohen has passed away,” the statement read. “We have lost one of music’s most revered and prolific visionaries. A memorial will take place in Los Angeles at a later date. The family requests privacy during their time of grief.” A cause of death was not given.
After an epic tour, the singer fell into poor health. But he dug deep and came up with a powerful new album
“My father passed away peacefully at his home in Los Angeles with the knowledge that he had completed what he felt was one of his greatest records,” Cohen’s son Adam wrote in a statement to Rolling Stone. “He was writing up until his last moments with his unique brand of humor.”
Before his death, the songwriter requested that he be laid to rest “in a traditional Jewish rite beside his parents, grandparents and great-grandparents,” his rabbi Adam Scheier wrote in a statement.
“Unmatched in his creativity, insight and crippling candor, Leonard Cohen was a true visionary whose voice will be sorely missed,” his manager Robert Kory wrote in a statement. “I was blessed to call him a friend, and for me to serve that bold artistic spirit firsthand, was a privilege and great gift. He leaves behind a legacy of work that will bring insight, inspiration and healing for generations to come.”
Mr. Cohen, as all great artists, had a muse by the name of Marianne Ihlen who directly inspired “So Long, Marianne” Ms. Ihlen recently died of leukemia.
Prior to her passing, Cohen wrote her a letter that anticipated his own death:
“Well Marianne it’s come to this time when we are really so old and our bodies are falling apart and I think I will follow you very soon. Know that I am so close behind you that if you stretch out your hand, I think you can reach mine.”
“Do not weep at my grave – I am not there
I am in the sun’s reflection in the sea
I am in the wind’s play above the grain fields
I am in the autumn’s gentle rain
I am in the Milky Way’s string of stars
And when on an early morning you are awaked by bird’s song
It is my voice that you are hearing
So do not weep at my grave – we shall meet again.”
1932 Mary Elizabeth Frye
So long Mr. Cohen: You will be missed.