Oh take this longing from my tongue: lines from the broken-down nightingale

I've had a friend in town. We probably drove by you a handful of times late at night. We were singing with all the car windows down as if a whole decade hadn't wedged and widened itself between when we had first met and now.

Then this morning I woke up thinking of Leonard Cohen. I remembered the lyric: 'hungry as an archway.' And I decided that was very true feeling. There is an arching to want.

Cohen said things like this, too:

'I cannot understand why my arm is not a lilac tree.'


'So come my friends, be not afraid. We are so lightly here.'


'You should go from place to place recovering the poems that have been written for you.'

That last I think is from Book of Longings, which I haven't read, but opened once in a bookstore. The words leaped out and came with me I guess.

Lying there this morning, with my eyes thudding a little from the booze we drank and drank last night, I thought of Jeff Buckley and Wolf River and Glen Hansard's comment about Hallelujah: 'Jeff sang it back to Leonard as a love song to what he achieved.'

Thankfully, Seamus nudged me to go out or who knows what tailspin I might have occupied. Anyhow, those lines of Cohen's are so sweet, and I wanted to remember them to you.