Leonard Cohen By BrynaWalkey
His life • Born on September 21,1934 in Montreal • Born into a Jewish family • 78 years old (still alive and still performing) • Father died when he was nine • Mother died when he was 44 • Had 2 children; one boy and one girl • He battles severe depression
His career • Cohen started writing in his teen years • Mostly writes about love, religion and politics • Was disappointed with his lack of success in writing • Moved to the US to pursue a career with folk music • In 1967 he released his first album “ Songs of Leonard Cohen” • 12 albums released London 2009
Why he’s great • Leonard Cohen writes from his experiences • His poems are relatable • He uses clever metaphors, similes and symbols in his writing • He isn’t just a poet • He’s 78 and still going on tours and producing albums
Poems • Three of his best poems are Tower of Song, Bird on a Wire and Nightingale
Nightingale I built my house beside the wood So I could hear you singing And it was sweet and it was good And love was all beginning Fare thee well my nightingale 'Twas long ago I found you Now all your songs of beauty fail The forest closes 'round you The sun goes down behind a veil 'Tis now that you would call me So rest in peace my nightingale Beneath your branch of holly Fare thee well my nightingale I lived but to be near you Tho' you are singing somewhere still I can no longer hear you
Content • He fell in and out of love with a woman. • In the beginning she was very beautiful but as time went on he lost interest in her. • He knows that she never actually changed, but he still doesn’t feel the same as before. • He lets her go in the end.
Analysis • No specific meter • Rhyme scheme A,B,A,B, for most of the poem • Uses more indirect words such as “wood” instead of “the forest” • Uses words like “thee” rather than “her” to support the symbol.
Sources • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonard_Cohen • http://www.leonardcohen.com/ca • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonard_Cohen_discography • http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/leonardcohen/nightingale.html