lundi 2 juin 2014

Notes on Cohen #4: Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye

I have always loved this song, just as I have loved them all.  However, I had viewed it as yet another charming-helpless-villain cop-out break-up song by the ever-blameless Casanova Cohen.  Look at me, I'm being self-aware enough that it must render me blameless!  "Let's not talk of love and chains" - let's be modern and cool; stop holding me back with your boring old feminine traditions.  Clearly you're the one with the problem, not me.  All told to a deceptively beautiful passive-aggressive tune.

Yeah.  Thanks a lot, Ernest Hemingway.  Thanks a lot.

And yet...

Don't judge me, but in my current consciousness - however no-brow you may think it - I find it impossible to listen to this song without thinking of the recent reports that Peaches Geldof's husband sang it at her funeral.  It doesn't matter a bit what you think of her, or her family's situation.  It's like when I heard that Carole King's 'So Far Away' was played at Amy Winehouse's funeral - a long-beloved song was rendered temporarily unbearable by someone I never even knew.  I still give a thought to that girl I never knew whenever I hear it, amongst other things of my own.  Sometimes they're impossible to untangle, like cheap necklaces jumbled in a really old jewellery box.

I never thought this was a song about death.  Listening to it now, how can it not be?

My love goes with you,
As your love stays with me.
It's just the way it changes,
Like the shoreline and the sea.

It's probably still just a crap break-up song, though.

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