In 1969 I heard a song sung by Judy Collins on the radio, That's no way to say goodbye' and felt like I had been knocked over by a train the words were so moving. I rushed out and bought it. Shortly after, a new significant other heard me playing it and said 'have you heard the original?' As the answer was, of course, no, he brought over his LP 'Songs of Leonard Cohen' for me. We were both a bit unsure about the bing bongs but, hey, this album was something really special. That was it, ever since Leonard has drifted around in my life, good times and bad times, sometimes in the foreground, sometimes at the back. So I would have to say this is my favourite song, it was my introduction to him.
It is the spooky truth that whichever of his songs I am listening to any any given time I always think is my favourite, and this sounds true of several people's feelings. Suzanne, The Gypsy's Wife (the Field Commander Cohen live version), The Stranger Song, Famous Blue Raincoat, Bird on a Wire.... see, it is impossible to pick!
Except, I have never taken to 'Take this Waltz', it comes to me that maybe it is because the words do not represent Leonard's ideas, but are illustrations of Lorca's mind and I just don't get it.
...he shows you where to look amid the garbage and the flowers