Hallelujah must have been playing somewhere sweetly and softly as we all heard the news of Leonard Cohen’s death. He was a legend, a poet, a musician, a man that wrote and sang his songs. He was blessed with a gift, not just of music but humility, grace, and a connection with his audience. His performances brought them to his lyrical home, deep within his soul, opening them up to his magical performances. Having seen him in Dublin some years back, he was just wonderful. Again in Lissadell, the poet sang, wearing his trademark hat he wowed his audiences. Lissadell where another famous poet W.B.Yeats had written such famous words. A Canadian now whispered those words to us. He sang with elegance and ease and no ego. Time and time again, he spoke of his band, saying he would be nothing without them. He also spoke about going back on the road after he was left virtually penniless “but this 70 year old man just keeps on going”. The distraction of his financial situation must have had a massive impact on him. There would have also been a massive distraction in relation to the resulting court case against his former manager in relation to fraud. And so he focused. He went back on the road. He did a world tour and he let the light in. The courage to keep going, to start over, to believe he could do it, to do what was right, to stick to what he believed in, to be true to his values, and to be successful was something he did so well. We all benefited.
In times of political uncertainty, we can learn from him. We can all be distracted by fear, but taking a leaf from his music sheets, perhaps we can learn that there is a courage within all of us to find focus from the distraction. Often the distraction can stop us in our tracks, but, if we focus on what we believe, if we teach our children love, each one of us no matter how small or tall we are, if we focus on what’s right, we can find that peace. The peace that comes from focusing on the right things in the right way at the right time.
As Leonard Cohen said “there is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in”.
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