On Thursday evening of last week we lost one of the greatest songwriters to grace the planet when Leonard Cohen died at age 82. The legendary singer will be mourned the world over for his dark, sardonic and tender songwriting — his ability to blend the sacred and the profane was unmatched, and an essential contribution to our canon.
Of course, no matter how upset and grief-stricken fans may be, it’s Cohen’s family who are hurting the most right now. Though Leonard was vocal about how ready he was for death following his brand new album You Want It Darker, the loss of a parent is always a blow no matter what. Cohen’s son Adam shared a post about the unassuming funeral they held for his father this weekend:
Here’s the full text:
My sister and I just buried my father in Montreal. With only immediate family and a few lifelong friends present, he was lowered into the ground in an unadorned pine box, next to his mother and father. Exactly as he’d asked. As I write this I’m thinking of my father’s unique blend of self-deprecation and dignity, his approachable elegance, his charisma without audacity, his old-world gentlemanliness and the hand-forged tower of his work. There’s so much I wish I could thank him for, just one last time. I’d thank him for the comfort he always provided, for the wisdom he dispensed, for the marathon conversations, for his dazzling wit and humor. I’d thank him for giving me, and teaching me to love Montreal and Greece. And I’d thank him for music; first for his music which seduced me as a boy, then for his encouragement of my own music, and finally for the privilege of being able to make music with him. Thank you for your kind messages, for the outpouring of sympathy and for your love of my father.
And if you need a better sense of just what kind of a man Cohen was, check out this excerpt from David Remnick’s recent New Yorker profile on the singer, it’s a note he sent to his long-lost lover Marianne while she was dying this summer:
We’ll miss you. See you down the road, Leonard.