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Thursday, October 27, 2016

A Tweet for Leonard Cohen

"Poetry is just the evidence of your life.  If your life is burning well, poetry is just the ash"     -- Leonard Cohen

I stumbled on this quote online a few months ago.  It captures something very close to the way I've come to feel about writing and art -- that it is nothing more than a residue of the way we live at any given moment in time. And as Cohen suggests, the purer the flame, the better the poem may be and the closer the poet will then be to living exactly as he or she says; and then perhaps, the poet will also become even more familiar with silence and the taste of ash upon the tongue. 

When art is purest ash
It’s life that’s all aflame
Best to be a poet burning
Instead of worshipping what remains

*  *  *  *  *

November 11th update:  Yesterday morning, the day of Leonard Cohen’s death, my glasses fell off the dresser and the frames snapped, sending the left lens skittering across the floor; and since then, quite literally, everything is cracked, including my field of vision, and I’m unsure how the pieces fit back together, even as the light keeps streaming in.

Ring the bells that still can ring 
Forget your perfect offering 
There is a crack in everything 
That's how the light gets in

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