Leonard Cohen Gives Up Asking “What Do Women Want?” & Decides “To Utterly And Absolutely Surrender”

You know,  for a long time men have been asking the question, ‘What do women want?’ I asked it a couple of times myself, but I finally gave up asking this question. And I have decided to utterly and absolutely surrender. I am ready to do anything for a woman’s favor. I am ready to surrender totally and absolutely. I put it on the line right now! I give up!quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


Leonard Cohen’s introduction to “I’m Your Man” at the April 28, 1988 concert at Jaahalli Helsinki, Finland; Originally posted October 29, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“We do everything for love.” Leonard Cohen


Yeats’s father said poetry is the social act of a solitary man – we all find ways of bridging that isolation. For writers it is words, but for the cabinet-maker it is the presentation of the finished bureau. I don’t think the act of writing is especially significant. I think a man or woman lays their work at the foot of their beloved. We do everything for love.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


From A Life In The Day Of Leonard Cohen Interview By Nigel Williamson. The Sunday Times Magazine (London), 1997 (no longer online). Originally posted Dec 22, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“This confrontation [between men & women] involves some serious risks to the versions of oneself ” Leonard Cohen

We’re [men and women are] all in the same boat, we’ve entered into this quarrel, into this cage, union, and extremely ambiguous circumstance together and we’re going to sort it out together. That is why I never thought of myself as a romantic poet because I always was very clear from the beginning that this confrontation involves some serious risks to the versions of oneself … And it’s always been confrontational. Not in an aggressive sense but in an acknowledging sense that there are some profound differences and it involves serious risks and that these risks are really best acknowledged. And I think that’s the tone of most of the stuff and if the love and passion can transgress that mutual acknowledgement then you do have something that takes off, either it’s a song or a poem or the moment. But without that, you’ve got the moon-in-June school of writing–though my stuff gets close to the moon-in-June school of writing, but I think it’s that acknowledgement of the risk that rescues it every time.quotedown2


From Leonard Cohen by Barbara Gowdy (November 19, 1992 interview published in One on One: The Imprint Interviews, ed. Leanna Crouch,  Somerville House Publishing 1994).

Note: Originally posted August 2, 2012 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“[The Hero is] precisely the character we have to surrender when we move into that field of love” Leonard Cohen


Nobody can live at the centre of the drama thinking that he’s the hero and that everybody else has some kind of lesser role. So that’s precisely the character we have to surrender when we move into that field of love, and it’s always painful for him to take off his armour. He gets wounded immediately because there’s arrows flying all over the place. As soon as he take’s off his hero’s costume he goes down with an arrow in his heart, that’s why, you know, the figure of cupid arose. You go down with that arrow in your heart, it’s no joke. It’s no joke. You feel it with your children, you feel it with your mate, and you feel it with your parents, you feel it with your friends. If ever you take off the hero’s armour, you get hit right away.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


From How The Heart Approaches What It Yearns – Interview With Leonard Cohen Presented By John McKenna. RTE Ireland, May 9 & 12, 1988. Found at LeonardCohenFiles.com. Photo of Leonard Cohen by Roland Godefroy (Own work) [GFDL or CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons. Originally posted December 2, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“When you give love, you take a wound” Leonard Cohen

When you give love, you take a wound. If you give full love, of course, you die. To love, something in the ego has to die, has to surrender anyway, and with that surrender a wound is taken.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


From “a 1988 interview” quoted in Leonard Cohen: The Future by David Whiteis. Chicago Reader: 1992. Found at LeonardCohenFiles.  Originally posted November 11, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric