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The book is divided into 5 sections: 1. Let Us Compare Mythologies 2. The Spice-Box of Earth 3. Flowers for Hitler 4. Parasites of Heaven 5. New Poems. It contains the full lyric of Suzanne, here called "Suzanne Takes You Down" and an embryonic version of True Love Leaves No Traces, a beautiful song from his much maligned album Death Of a Ladies' Man, here called "As The Mist Leaves No Scar" ( I also love the breezy pop version by Dead Famous People on the tribute album I'm Your Fan). The poem The Only Tourist In Havana Turns His Thoughts Homeward (1961) reminds me of his song "Stories of the Street" on the album Songs of Leonard Cohen that also deals with a visit to Havana. Queen Victoria And Me appears on the album Live Songs as just "Queen Victoria." The poem It's Good To Sit With People mentions the obscure 60's singer Tim Hardin (the same guy or a relative inspired Dylan's album title John Wesley Harding). I won't try to venture into literary criticism (my frame of reference is limited to Beats like Allen Ginsburg and Confessionals like Robert Lowell, John Berryman and Anne Sexton) but I love Cohen's imagery and I enjoy most of these. The book concludes with an index of first lines and there's a pic of a very young Leonard on the back cover. This is a must for all Cohen completists.
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on 12 January 2017
My husband had this book when it was actually published and lost it. I was happy to get this copy for him and he was so pleased with it.
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on 22 September 2017
This book has travelled with me since the early seventies - and it has got better with age. So powerful and so insightful. It is amazing to think of what the world was like when this was published, which makes it all the better.
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This volume contains selections from Let Us Compare Mythologies, The Spice-Box of Earth, Flowers for Hitler & Parasites of Heaven, concluding with New Poems. Suzanne is here called Suzanne Takes You Down, and there's an embryonic version of True Love Leaves No Traces, a beautiful song from his much maligned album Death of a Ladies' Man, called As The Mist Leaves No Scar (I also love the breezy pop version by Dead Famous People on the tribute album I'm Your Fan).

The poem The Only Tourist In Havana Turns His Thoughts Homeward (1961) reminds me of his song Stories of the Street on the album Songs of Leonard Cohen that also deals with a visit to Havana. Queen Victoria And Me appears on the album Live Songs as just Queen Victoria. The poem It's Good To Sit With People mentions the obscure 1960's singer-songwriter Tim Hardin (the same dude or a relative inspired Dylan's album title John Wesley Harding).

I won't venture into literary criticism (my frame of reference is limited to Beats like Allen Ginsburg and Confessionals like Robert Lowell, John Berryman and Anne Sexton) but I love Cohen's imagery and I enjoy most of these poems. The book concludes with an index of first lines. This is a must for all Cohen fans. It's just not the same without the tunes, his voice and those angelic female vocals ...
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