Listen To, Read Lyrics Of New Leonard Cohen Song “Going Home” From Old Ideas Album Now

Hear Going Home by Leonard Cohen

“Going Home” At The New Yorker Site

As discussed in yesterday’s Heck Of A Guy post,  Jan 16, 2012 – Hear New Leonard Cohen Song “Going Home” Streamed By New Yorker Site, the new Leonard Cohen song, viewers may now hear “Going Home” from the soon to be released Old Ideas album at the New Yorker site. The poem, “Going Home,” which is the basis of the song’s lyrics, is also available on  the Poetry page of the magazine.

Poem & Lyrics: Going Home
by Leonard Cohen

Note: The words sung in the audio recording differ from the words printed on the Poetry page.  I’ve indicated the variations by entering words that were sung that were not in the poem in red. The words  they replaced, if any, are printed in blue.  I’ve also indented the penultimate and antepenultimate verses to indicate they are sung by the chorus.

I love to speak with Leonard
He’s a sportsman and a shepherd
He’s a lazy bastard
Living in a suit

But he does say what I tell him
Even though it isn’t welcome
He will never/just doesn’t have the freedom
To refuse

He will speak these words of wisdom
Like a sage, a man of vision
Though he knows he’s really nothing
But the brief elaboration of a tube/tune

Going home
Without my sorrow
Going home
Sometime tomorrow
Going home
To where it’s better

Than before

Going home
Without my burden
Going home
Behind the curtain
Going home
Without the costume
That I wore

He wants to write a love song
An anthem of forgiving
A manual for living with defeat

A cry above the suffering
A sacrifice recovering
But that isn’t what I want/need him to complete

I want to make him/him to be certain
That he doesn’t have a burden
That he doesn’t need a vision

That he only has permission
To do my instant bidding
That/Which is to SAY what I have told him
To repeat

Going home
Without my sorrow
Going home
Sometime tomorrow
Going home
To where it’s better
Than before

Going home
Without my burden
Going home
Behind the curtain
Going home
Without the/this costume
That I wore

[Chorus sings:]
I’m going home
Without my sorrow
Going home
Sometime tomorrow
Going home
To where it’s better
Than before

Going home
Without my burden
Going home
Behind the curtain
Going home
Without this costume
That I wore

I love to speak with Leonard
He’s a sportsman and a shepherd
He’s a lazy bastard
Living in a suit

Credit Due Department: I became aware that the printed and sung versions of “Going Home” differed from a LeonardCohenForum post written by dreamermusic.  Jerry Berman  convinced me the most likely word sung at the end of the 12th line is “tune.”

Darkness & Show Me The Place

Darkness By Leonard Cohen
From Old Ideas Album


Leonard Cohen – Darkness by leonardcohen

Lyrics: Darkness
by Leonard Cohen

I caught the darkness
It was drinking from your cup
I caught the darkness
drinking from your cup
I said is this contagious?
You said “Just drink it up”

I’ve got no future
I know my days are few
The present’s not that pleasant
Just a lot of things to do
I thought the past would last me
But the darkness got that too

I should have seen it coming
It was right behind your eyes
You were young and it was summer
I just had to take the dive
Winning you was easy
But darkness was the prize

I don’t smoke no cigarette
I don’t drink no alcohol
I ain’t had much loving yet
But that’s always been your call
Hey, I don’t miss it baby
I no taste for anything at all

I used to love the rainbow
And I used to love the view
I love the early morning
I pretend that it was new
But I caught the darkness, baby
And I got it worse than you

I caught the darkness
It was drinking from your cup
I caught the darkness
drinking from your cup
I said is this contagious?
You said “Just drink it up”

Credit Due Department: Lyrics were transcribed by Tom Sakic at A Thousand Kisses Deep.

Show Me The Place By Leonard Cohen
From Old Ideas Album


Show Me The Place by leonardcohe

Lyrics: Show Me The Place
by Leonard Cohen

Show me the place, where you want your slave to go
Show me the place, I’ve forgotten I don’t know
Show me the place where my head is bending low
Show me the place, where you want your slave to go

Show me the place, help me roll away the stone
Show me the place, I can’t move this thing alone
Show me the place where the word became a man
Show me the place where the suffering began

The troubles came I saved what I could save
A shred of light, a particle a wave
But there were chains so I hastened to behave
There were chains so I loved you like a slave

Show me the place, where you want your slave to go
Show me the place, I’ve forgotten I don’t know
Show me the place, where my head is bending low
Show me the place, where you want your slave to go

The troubles came I saved what I could save
A shred of light, a particle a wave
But there were chains so I hastened to behave
There were chains so I loved you like a slave

Show me the place
Show me the place
Show me the place

Show me the place, help me roll away the stone
Show me the place, I can’t move this thing alone
Show me the place where the word became a man
Show me the place where the suffering began

Other Old Ideas Posts

8 Responses to Listen To, Read Lyrics Of New Leonard Cohen Song “Going Home” From Old Ideas Album Now

  1. Funny, but during several listens early this morning, my absolute favorite moment of the haunting “Going Home” was the following line: “Though he knows he’s really nothing / but the brief elaboration of a tune”: a line with mystical echoes evoking the music of the spheres — a la the Rumi-reading Cohen of “The Window,” for example — and a nice self-reflexive transition into the “tune” of the chorus. Or so I thought. Now I discover that, according to the New Yorker, at least, the line is much more corporally, humorously grounded — the brief elaboration of a TUBE. It’s going to take me a few listens to adjust to this.

    • Take another look. Another viewer just persuaded me that the word sung at the end of the 12th line is “tune” and I revised that line as a result

  2. I wonder, might the mighty New Yorker have misprinted that word in the poem? Admittedly I’m holding out hope for “tune” — not only in the song but in the poem. At the risk of embarrassing myself, I confess I’m unsure how to read the line if it is indeed “tube.” Elaborating a tube? This somewhat reminds me of my favorite line from the Cavafy-adapted “Alexandra Leaving”: “Exquisite music, Alexandra laughing. / Your first commitments tangible again.” At some point, I saw the lyrics printed as FIRM commitments rather than FIRST, which would have lessened the poetic resonance of the line for me.

  3. PS — Of course, L. Cohen’s obsession with and care for words far surpasses mine, so I have no doubt that if “tube” is the word he intended in “Going Home,” I shall one day discover all sorts of revelatory meanings inhering in the line!

  4. Might it be a “tube” through which voices/messages/tunes come?

  5. Over and over, again and again…I clearly hear ‘tube’.

  6. “Going Home”
    Close your eyes, and listen carefully at the words… to my ears the word is “TUBE”

  7. Our whole central nervous system starts developing from a kind of ‘tube’ in week 4 of pregnancy, so I assumed – probably wrongly – that this was his intended meaning.
    “Nerve growth begins when a sheet of cells on the back of the embryo folds in the middle to form a tube, which will become the future spinal cord. At one end the tube enlarges to form the brain’s major sections.”
    source: http://www.baby2see.com/development/first_trimester.html