Best Halloween Pick Up Line From A Leonard Cohen Poem: “I perceived the outline of your breasts through your Hallowe’en costume”


The Energy Of Slaves (back cover) by Leonard Cohen – Canada: 1974

I perceived the outline of your breasts
through your Hallowe’en costume
I knew you were falling in love with me
because no other man could perceive
the advance of your bosom into his imagination
It was a rupture of your unusual modesty
for me and me alone
through which you impressed upon my shapeless hunger
the incomparable and final outline of your breasts
like two deep fossil shells
which remained all night long and probably forever

Poem 17 from “The Energy of Slaves” by Leonard Cohen

Credit Due Department: Scan atop this post contributed by Dominique BOILE. View other Leonard Cohen photos used as back cover art at Leonard Cohen On The Back Cover

Note: Originally Oct 17, 2013 posted at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Rolling Stone Names Leonard Cohen’s Avalanche To List Of “25 Songs That Are Truly Terrifying”

avaIn anticipation of Halloween, Rolling Stone urges us to “feel free to ignore “Monster Mash” in favor of this handful of more austere chillers: Vintage murder ballads, dissonant classical spine-tinglers, psychedelic freak-outs, shock-rock creep-outs, Southern gothic alt-rock gloom, art-noise desolation and more.” And, one of the choices proffered is Leonard Cohen’s Avalanche (1971).

Songs of Love and Hate might be Leonard Cohen’s most depraved album, which is saying a lot. Accounts of suicide (“Dress Rehearsal Rag”) and infidelity (“Famous Blue Raincoat”) leave an undeniable sting, but the 1971 LP’s creepiest moments come on opener “Avalanche,” which finds Cohen playing his classic role of stygian bard to perfection. Over rolling flamenco guitar and swelling strings, he portrays a hunchback living at the bottom of a gold mine: “Your laws do not compel me/To kneel grotesque and bare,” he sneers. Even as the song edges into dark obsession and, eventually, pure horror (“It is your turn, beloved/It is your flesh that I wear”), Cohen’s voice maintains a trancelike composure. No wonder gloom-rock poet laureate Nick Cave has been covering the song for more than 30 years.

Note: This is also the most recent addition to the Cohencentric collection

Video: Is This What You Wanted by Leonard Cohen – Paris 1976


Rare photo of June 5, 1976 Leonard Cohen Concert at the Olympia in Paris taken by Dominique BOILE

This video was originally posted as part of this site’s 2014 Leonard Cohen – Halloween offering. because “Is This What You Wanted” is, after all, the most Halloweenish Leonard Cohen song.  Not only does this track feature a ghost and the requisite haunted house (“And is this what you wanted / to live in a house that is haunted / by the ghost of you and me?”) but it also suggests a number of appropriate disguises: “very reverend Freud,” “dirty little boy,” “Steve McQueen,” “Mr. Clean,” “Rin Tin Tin” …

But, even without the Halloween angle, it’s a wonderful song. And, ya gotta love Leonard Cohen’s introduction to Is “This What You Wanted” at his Feb 9, 1975 Boston show:

This following song is a dialogue between you and your perfect lover.Unfortunately your perfect lover is not present for the conversation.1

OK, I admit “Is This What You Wanted” also gets my vote for the funniest lines of any Leonard Cohen song:

… you were Marlon Brando
I was Steve McQueen
You were KY Jelly
I was Vaseline
You were the father of modern medicine
Yeah I was Mr. Clean
You were the Whore & the Beast of Babylon
I was Rin Tin Tin …

Anyway, it turns out the only live version of “Is This What You Wanted” I can find on YouTube is from the 1975 Bryn Mawr show, which is accurately described on the site as “not the best sound quality, but good enough.”

To provide an alternative with better sound, I tracked down a high quality audio track from a radio broadcast of the June 5, 1976 Leonard Cohen concert at the Olympia Theatre in Paris. A number of the photos used in the video were taken at that concert, most of the shots are from 1976, and all date within two years of the show.

Leonard Cohen: Is This What You Wanted
Olympia Theatre, Paris: June 5, 1976
Video by Allan Showalter

Credit Due Department: While there is no practical way to acknowledge the origins of all the photos in this video, it would be remiss not to note that all the 1976 Olympia show photos were taken by Dominique BOILE, and many of the other shots were contributed by him.

Note: Originally posted Oct 31, 2014 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric


  1. Leonard Cohen Prologues []

Do It Yourself Leonard Cohen Halloween Mask (2008-2010 Tour Version)


Leonard Cohen mask if worn by Paul Newman

Instructions: The World Tour Leonard Cohen Mask

The brim of Cohen’s trademark fedora necessitates the use of two images.



  1. Click on the links below and download both Mask 1 and Mask 2:
    Mask 1
    Mask 2
  2. Print both pages (preferably in color) on card stock paper
  3. Cut out both images and cut out the eye slots in both faces
  4. Match up the images with Mask 2 on top and glue them together
  5. Attach a handle (while a Popsicle stick is the traditional implement, a pencil, tongue depressor, and many other household items will work; DrHGuy has found a spatula makes an ideal handle)

And the final product looks like the image atop this post – if you have Paul Newman eyes.

Note: Originally posted Oct 30, 2011 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Kris Kristofferson Halloween Mask For Leonard Cohen (Well, He Can’t Go As Leonard Cohen, Can He?)


Little lady, you’re in luck, I’m Kris Kristoffersonquotedown2

Leonard Cohen

This mask is inspired by Leonard Cohen’s impersonation of Kris Kristofferson, the singer-songwriter for whom Janis Joplin was purportedly searching when she ran into Cohen at the Chelsea Hotel.

That’s not the only evidence we have of Kris-envy on the part of Mr Cohen.  In the video, “This Beggar’s Description,” Phil Tetrault reminds Cohen of his declaration that he didn’t want to go to parties that Kristofferson was attending because all the women were attracted to him, depriving the other men, including Cohen, of their attentions.

So, Leonard, this one’s for you.

Printing Instructions:

To print a full size mask on a sheet of US Letter size (8.5in x11in) paper,

  1. Click on the thumbnail of the mask you wish to print
  2. From your browser window, click “File-Print Preview”
  3. Adjust the printing settings to prevent printing of headers and footers
  4. Depending on the browser, turn on “Print Wide Pages” or set the print size at 125%
  5. Click “Print”

Note: Originally posted October 31, 2014 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric