Jagged Thought #228: A Letter to Leonard and His Imagined Response


Dear Leonard,

I have always loved your music
In any mood I would listen to it.
You played such a beautiful song
And you are gone
But those songs live on.

The first song I heard of yours was
Rough and scratchy, your voice was so low
And scraggly, gruff, and uninviting.
But those words, the future is murder,
And everybody knows,
That was beautiful writing.

A friend showed me your soft side,
The low tones of monotone of a silent kind.
The words walked so gingerly on the record
Scratch, and every word was poetry.
Wonderful at that.

I heard your Songs of Leonard Cohen
And then I heard New Skin for the Old Ceremony
And both spoke to me, I heard each word internally, so deep to me.
Those words cleverly hand picked,
such meaning in each of them.

Then I learned about you, the man
who wrote them.

I learned you were a poet, and an author
And a Buddhist monk.
As you got older I could see your soul was full of love.

You passed in 2016. What a terrible year!
Trump was voted into office, and love seemed to disappear.
Did you know David Bowie? He died that year too.

But the biggest loss of 2016
was definitely losing you
(Though you lived till 82).
But now I’ve known I’ve gone on too long.
And the record is nearing its end.
But this letter may be over, but your songs they’ll play again.
With every time I hear
Famous Blue Raincoat
I think about the lines you wrote.
And how I admired you so much.

So I say I miss you sir,
And these words were written with love.
Sincerely, J. Wright


Dear Jason,

Thank you for your kind words.
I wrote each word with love.
Every word you ever heard.
I did know David. He was a true friend.
And I was sad to see him go.
And I am sad that I am gone.
But everything comes to an end.
I’m glad my music meant so much to you
It opens my heart, my friend.

Sincerely L. Cohen.


Jason Wright is the editor and founder of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly.


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