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Before We Meet Again Along the Rue St. Catherine

Before We Meet Again Along the Rue St. Catherine

(or, to Leonard Cohen: In Memorium 1934-2016)

If only this solitary window pane could keep me company.
While we play cantor’s tracks over metronome rails.
From Hudson to the Laurentians.
Let us read tehilim

Tonight I will be your shomer.
Watching you, old man, nude in the shteibel.
Snow angels descending
from Notre Dame Cathedral.

We will find a resting spot to sneak corned beef pastrami on rye.
In the curtain of trees where sad widows rest arthritic thighs.
We sled through the Mount Royale night.
Sniffling Hebrew liturgy and French curses.
You play me a song from the Isle of Wight.

So much death unfurled like a prayer book on fire.
We slide and fall with barren stare.
And none of it is beauty yet.
Which you knew how to decipher like a lamed vavnik.
What does it take to become a zen monk in a fedora?
A graveled voice, a gospel chorus.

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