“I’m not interested in posterity, which is a paltry form of eternity. I want to see the headlines… I’m not interested in an insurance plan for my work.” Leonard Cohen 1966

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Leonard Cohen Considers the Poetic Mind. CBC Interview. 1966. Originally posted July 16, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen On His Use Of Spenserian Stanzas In Night Music

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Most of the Leonard Cohen’s lyrics for Night Magic (see A Brief Introduction To Night Magic By Leonard Cohen & Lewis Furey + Video Clip) is written in Spenserian stanzas. He addresses this in the following excerpt:

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I’ve always been interested in form, maybe because I don’t trust my own spontaneous nature to come up with anything interesting, and form imposes a certain opportunity to get deeper than your first thought. There’s a school of poetry that believes first thought, best thought. That would have condemned me to an inauspicious superficiality if I had followed that, because I don’t have any ideas. Irving Layton once said to me, ‘Leonard is free from ideas.’ I don’t have an idea and I don’t trust my opinions. I think my opinions are second-rate, but when you submit yourself to a form, then something happens and you’re invited to dig deeper into the language and to discard the slogans by which you live, the easy alibis of language and of opinion. And if you’re looking in the Spenserian stanza, for instance—which is a very, very intricate verse form—you have to come up with many rhymes of the same sound; you’re invited to explore realms that you usually don’t get to in ordinary, easy thought. I’ve considered my thought stream extremely uninteresting, and it’s only when I can discard it that I find I can say something that I can get behind.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From An Interview with Leonard Cohen by Shelagh Rogers (Brick: Summer 2006 – This interview was originally broadcast on Sounds Like Canada in February 2006, produced by Carole Warren.)

 

“I want to take over the unconditional leadership of the world” Leonard Cohen

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I want to take over the unconditional leadership of the world, I want to lead the world to a new sensibility and there has to be a leader, a figure to do it. Sure, you can write that some little guy sang for the first time at Olympia and now he wants to take over the world. But I really believe the world is falling into step and people are getting together again. We’ll need everybody doing what they do best, not just singers. They’re already starting to do it. The main thing is to let them know they’re not alone.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

These often-quoted words by Leonard Cohen first appeared in “Leonard Cohen Wants the Unconditional Leadership of the World” by Susan Lumsden (Weekend Magazine Sept 12, 1970). Originally posted May 25, 2012 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen Explains How Suzanne And Krystal Burgers Led To Him Leaving Tennessee

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The girl I was with was what destroyed it [life in Franklin Tennessee], because she developed this obsession with Krystal burgers. I mean it got to be a serious problem.  She refused to cook, so we’d have to go in every day (20 miles) to eat cheeseburgers, and it just destroyed the whole isolation — Suzanne.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Leonard Cohen, explaining why he left Franklin,Tennessee in Leonard Lately – A Leonard Cohen interview-article by Bill Conrad. Posted May 7, 2012 at No Depression. Note: Although not published until 2012, the article is based on an interview that took place in autumn 1976.

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Credit Due Department: Photo by Nathan Eror from Houston, TX, USA – Breakfast, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikipedia Commons. Originally posted June 14, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“Where’s the beef?” Leonard Cohen defends the American hamburger

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The American hamburger – even the fast food one – is vastly underrated. It’s a pretty good piece of meatquotedown2

Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen 1993 Interview: The Fanning Sessions RTE

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“The thing I liked about [the PEN Award] was that I’m sharing it with Chuck Berry” Leonard Cohen

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The thing I liked about [the PEN New England award for literary excellence in song lyrics] was that I’m sharing it with Chuck Berry. ‘Roll over Beethoven / Tell Tchaikovsky the news’… I’d like to write a line like thatquotedown2

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The Wisdom Of Leonard Cohen by Kevin Perry. GQ: Jan 19, 2012. Chuck Berry photo by Michael Borkson – Flickr, CC BY 2.0, Wikipedia Commons. Originally posted Aug 12, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Also see Chuck Berry Dies – “All of us are footnotes to the words of Chuck Berry” Leonard Cohen

More about the 2012 PEN New England Song Lyrics of Literary Excellence Award won by Leonard Cohen and Chuck Berry at PEN Awards.