Dance Me To The End of Love (1984) – Leonard Cohen

The day before yesterday as I channel hopped something to watch on the ordinary shitty cable TV here, I was struck to find the documentary of Marianne & Leonard (Words of Love). I was glued to the TV until it concluded. The only other documentary about Leonard I’m familiar is the Tower of Song – The Leonard Cohen tribute concert. I couldn’t recommend both highly enough.

The weird thing about Leonard’s music as opposed to Dylan’s is how Leonard’s music lends itself to be covered by the masses and even sound at times much better than the original. I think that’s because Cohen’s poetry can be musically twisted and presented as something new (see Hallelujah). When people try to cover Dylan, more often than not it sounds abysmal because Dylan infuses the poetry of the song with the timbre of his voice and accentuation of tonal delivery (see If You See her Say Hello) .

Marianne and Leonard

As presented in the Marianne & Leonard documentary, Leonard was obsessed with the other sex and sex. It was what kept Marianne out of the picture after their time together. It could be argued that Marianne was the only female acquaintance of his who didn’t bow down to him and tell Leonard what his female adorers did on his trip-filled concert tours. She kept it real and it’s probably why he found so much comfort in maintaining contact with her because she knew him better than anyone else. Marianne really loved him and I think he did her and why in the last months of both of their lives they expressed their love for one another and parted this earth just a few months apart.

I think Marianne ‘Danced him’ indeed until the end of Love. His obsession with the female variety and seeing this unattainable ‘Love’ read in fairytales obfuscated what in fact ‘Love’ is. One could argue his life long obsession to find this convenient love brought him just dreams and poetry, but in the end he perhaps realised he had the truest love with him all the way until his and her dying days.

Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic till I’m gathered safely in
Lift me like an olive branch and be my homeward dove
Dance me to the end of love
Dance me to the end of love

“The more I live, the more I learn. The more I learn, the more I realize, the less I know.”- Michel Legrand

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Posted in Music
4 comments on “Dance Me To The End of Love (1984) – Leonard Cohen
  1. Heyda says:

    Super como siempre gracias por compartir todo esto. Y si eso eso es amor del bueno amor del q ya no existe ese si era el verdadero amor.

  2. Creo que Leonard escribio de un amor de otro mundo en esta cancion. Mientras todo siempre tiene su amor ideal. Y por fin ellos professiarion su amor por la otra y murieron asi.

  3. I agree with what you say about Dylan’s lyrics coming from the depths of his voice… Good reflection Matthew.

    • It’s what Dylan does with his voice in the song to accentuate its meaning and make it his own. Cohen seems to vocalize the words as if he intends others to share it. A proclamation of sorts. Thanks Bruce. Cheers.

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