Day 13: Take this Waltz
This song inevitably prompts me into dancing around my kitchen. In addition to being the singer we love, Leonard Cohen published several books of poetry embellished by his sketches.
Leonard Cohen wrote the poems in Book of Longing, his first book of poetry in more than twenty years, during his five-year stay at a Zen monastery on Southern California's Mount Baldy, and in Los Angeles, Montreal, and Mumbai. This dazzling collection is enhanced by the author's playful and provocative drawings, which interact in exciting, unexpected ways on the page with poetry that is timeless, meditative, and often darkly humorous. An international sensation, Book of Longing contains all the elements that have brought Cohen's artistry with language worldwide recognition.
Here's a page from the book:
"Take this Waltz" was released as part of the 1986 Federico García Lorca tribute album Poet in New York (Poeta en Nueva York) and as a single.
The song's lyrics are a loose translation, into English, of the poem "Pequeño vals vienés" (Little Viennese Waltz) by the Spanish poet Federico García Lorca (one of Cohen's favorite poets). The poem was first published in Lorca's seminal book Poeta en Nueva York. The song reached number one in Spain in 1986.