Saturday, 30 April 2016

Cold, Broken, Happy

"Hallelujah" as performed by Rufus Wainwright

What is it about the singing of words like these: ". . . her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you . . ."? Or these: ". . . remember when I moved in you / the holy dark was moving, too / and every breath we drew was Hallelujah / Hallelujah / Hallelujah / Hallelujah / Hallelujah . . ."? And these: ". . . Maybe there's a God above / and all I've ever learned from love / was how to shoot at someone who outdrew you . . ."? What is it about words like all those, and like all the others in this magnificent song, being sung by a voice that will put you on the floor every time you hear it?

I have no idea -- I just accept it as one of life's gifts.

The words belong to the great Leonard Cohen, the voice to the great Rufus Wainwright. The song has been covered -- beautifully so -- by many, but only this one makes me cry, only this one makes me feel so mystifyingly happy for four short minutes. I've been allocated millions of those things, but not many of them have been, or will be, better than these four.

I think it might be the best song in the world, and this its best version. Praise its harsh beauty. Join in on the "Hallelujahs," of which there are twenty-nine. I counted, and I sang along. (Good thing I live alone.)

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