DOOM AND THE SWEET BIRDS OF SPRING…….SAD SONGS AND LEONARD COHEN

 

                                     1

 

           I was listening to some

ballads that were so depressing… I wanted to

take a long walk off a short pier. I have a friend

who always used to say, after he heard 

a sad song:


       “That was really nice. I have to go into

the bathroom now and slice up!”


           The effects of the sad songs are

 so horrendous…If I have to listen to any more…

 I mean… slow dirge-like pace of the last one…

 oh, boy! Ouch!         

       The problem is – these were not somebody

else ‘s songs, they were my own songs, my ballads

And  they were so damn sad

they might have this same effect on other

people as they had on me…other people might

want to off themselves, walk down that lonely

lane and step in front of an 18 wheeler.

        I can see the note such a person

might write me, “Gee, I really loved your

song… Bye! Bye!”

 

           Incredibly sad songs, what’s to be done?

          

           

           You never can tell. Leonard Cohen’s

early songs had the same effect on me…

and he didn’t turn out too badly.

           I mean, we’re all proud of the guy…And

so far as I know, no one I knew at the time

actually killed themselves after listening to

his first album – they just thought about it!

 

          So maybe “sad” is not so bad.

 And  “too sad” is easy to fix. You just turn

up the speed on the board!

 

 

       

       But….not only are these ballads depressing,

they’re long… 10-12 verses each. I poured 

down a whole bottle of strong wine 

to prepare myself…to escape the effect of the last six verses….

       I was afraid …if I digested some of 

the images too well  I might channel the moment, 

go back to the same 

state of mind I was in when 

I wrote  the    beautiful horrid damn things.

          And I don’t want that!  I want to avoid

the purple dragon’s den.   

     


       Here’s a dandy little ditty called, 

‘VALLEY OF DEATH”

which the promoters weren’t too keen on,

at the time… 

       


YOU WALK IN THE VALLEY OF DEATH

THE VALLEY OF DEATH.. 

ALONE

 

YOU WALK IN THE WILDERNESS

IN THE WILDERNESS

FAR FROM YOUR HOME

 

Catchy, huh? Actually the above lines 

 are the HOOK:   that’s the  cheerful

 part of the song… 


        Or there’s this one!

 

       Going out to the Mountains

      Going to sit beside the sea

      GOING TO WALK AMONG THE MOUNTAINS

            OF THE MOON

      AND CALL YOUR NAME

 

      Yeah, well these words don’t exactly cheer me

up, either!


       This song is done in Am… with a descending

base down to the low F  (on guitar)

And the one I was just listening to

had this added feature – it was recorded

at about speed 18 1/2 ( whatever the one below 33 1/3 is)

and it sweeps over you like the slow waves of a calm

lake on a night with no wind….


          It’s a cheery piece, guaranteed to hurry  the

demise of all the manic-depressives among us…

and there are more than you might think… at

least there will be when we’ve all heard this one

No questions the songs have power…

and there’s no doubt that they are beautiful,

so what’s to do?

            Put ’em in with some up tempo

songs that make six year old kids want to

jump up and down on their beds… And make

grownups (want to) dance. 

          

         I did find  four or five that made me want to laugh…

if I could extricate myself from the chair

I had been pole-axed into by

those ballads…

              There are a few rockers in terrible taste –

which is the way a good rocker should

be!!!  So there’s hope… and if there’s any way

I can find out how to put a taped recording

onto a published post, I’ll lay some of these babies

on you.

         But not the ballads… the ballads should

come with a warning….And the warning

should say: “Do Not Unwrap this CD alone, if you

have any suicidal tendencies whatsoever!”

       And most of us do.                                                                

 

 

 

                               

 

 

 

 

                             2

                                

      Oh God, I have to lighten up!

here’s more of the above article.

 

 

    I suppose I had  written  in a trance of 

mortal depression, love sickness and gloom that…  

Such a strong sense that the world was ending… 

that the environment was being fucked

 up so badly by the monopolies.. that we were

going down the drain… 

        and worse, our sense of trust in

each other…was going down the drain, too

            I mean, the feeling that we are all

pulling together in the same nation and in the same

cause, had almost totally been destroyed…

           and the capitalistic running dogs  ho! ho!

 had run out of horse flesh to eat, so they had turned cannibalistic and they were devouring us, their own people..

they were eating OUR flesh!

          Whoops! 

         

           See what I mean?

 With thoughts like these, you can see

why I moved to a cabin in the bush!

 

            

         (I have always wanted to use that

“capitalistic running dogs” line)

 

 

 

 

        Wait a minute! What am I saying?

We  still do have a national spirit! All is not lost ! 

We don’t have to turn to communism or cannibalism.

All you have to do is look at a Canadian hockey crowd!  

Then tell me that we can’t pull together! 

         Bullshit! 

         Spring is just around the corner!

             

         The Leafs are in desperate straights…

O.K., now they’re finished!  But only for a few

more months.

         You can taste spring

in the air, but it’s not here yet…

It’s my favourite time of year!

             What the hell am I feeling gloomy

about? 

 

 

 

 

 

                   *   *   *

 

 

AN INTRODUCTION TO THE MEANING OF REALIZATION

 

 

EASTER GREETINGS: AN INTRODUCTION TO THE MEANING OF REALIZATION

 
 

                  If we are going to prepare an honest account,
I think it is necessary to included an account
of  the realization experience.
         A Japanese writer referred to this experience
as, “The  foundation experience”. I understand
what he means by this term. After you have this
experience, you are standing on a different 
floor. Before the experience, the floor you stood
on was the floor of the ego. Everything circles
around the eggshell sphere of you own special
identity.
        But once the eggshell implodes, the foundation
of your ego existence has disappeared. Realization
is the only experience which changes a person’s
identity. After the experience, you are no longer
‘special’ in the sense you were before. You are
special because you are at one with the earth
and the universe, and the universe is blossoming.
There are no problems whatsoever, you realize.
         There is only the present and the present
is a continuous birthing. As people, we have
endless difficulties, but, as the universe,
you see that all the world is a joyful
dance.

         I’m making the process sound easy,
but it is not. It is a devotion in love, attention,
concentration, focus, costing not less
than everything.
         There is no need to travel to a distant
land to find the meaning of the experience.
Redemption, Realization are within the grasp
of your own hand.
         But it is not an experience you will
ever find through grasping.