Leonard Cohen On The Heart Of “The Gypsy’s Wife”
This recently uploaded excerpt from the Harry Rasky documentary, The Song of Leonard Cohen,1 contains an especially explicit discussion by Cohen of the portion of his life that is captured in the song.
The Leonard Cohen and Suzanne Elrod History
Between 1968 and 1970 (accounts vary), Cohen and Suzanne Elrod,2 an artist, began a relationship that Rasky claims was a marriage while Cohen has said that “cowardice” and “fear” precluded marriage. Given that in this clip, Cohen terms the relationship a “marriage,” one can understand Rasky’s contention.
In any case, the union resulted in the birth of two children, Adam in 1972 and Lorca in 1974, both of whom are pictured in the video clip and in the screenshot below.
The relationship between Cohen and Elrod ended by 1979, when the documentary was filmed. That final disruption is the focus of “The Gypsy’s Wife.”
The Video Of Leonard Cohen’s “The Gypsy’s Wife”
In addition to the explication and a solid performance of the song, Cohen also reads his poem, “Slowly I Married Her.”
Leonard Cohen on The Gypsy’s Wife
Bonus: Suzanne Elrod At Home In Hydra
Suzanne Elrod has lived at the home Cohen originally purchased in Hydra for some time although rumors have surfaced that she may be leaving.
- For those interested in learning more about The Song of Leonard Cohen, I recommend the concise, well written Review by Dick Straub. [↩]
- As previously noted in The 2008 Leonard Cohen Field Guide, the song, “Suzanne,” does not refer to Suzanne Elrod. It was Suzanne Verdal, the wife (then) of Cohen’s friend, the Québécois sculptor Armand Vaillancourt, who fed the singer tea and oranges. [↩]
- Elrod is also pictured on the cover of “Death Of A Ladies’ Man
- I found the photos from Vogue at LeonardCohenFiles. [↩]