"Light as the Breeze" as written by and Leonard Cohen....
She stands before you naked
You can see it, you can taste it,
And she comes to you light as the breeze.
Now you can drink it or you can nurse it,
It don't matter how you worship
As long as you're
Down on your knees.
So I knelt there at the delta,
At the alpha and the omega,
At the cradle of the river and the seas.
And like a blessing come from heaven
For something like a second
I was healed and my heart
Was at ease.

O baby I waited
So long for your kiss
For something to happen,
Oh something like this.

And you're weak and you're harmless
And you're sleeping in your harness
And the wind going wild
In the trees,
And it ain't exactly prison
But you'll never be forgiven
For whatever you've done
With the keys.

O baby I waited

It's dark now and it's snowing
O my love I must be going,
The river has started to freeze.
And I'm sick of pretending
I'm broken from bending
I've lived too long on my knees.

Then she dances so graceful
And your heart's hard and hateful
And she's naked
But that's just a tease.
And you turn in disgust
From your hatred and from your love
And comes to you
Light as the breeze.

O baby I waited

There's blood on every bracelet
You can see it, you can taste it,
And it's please baby
Please baby please.
And she says, drink deeply, pilgrim
But don't forget there's still a woman
Beneath this
Resplendent chemise.

So I knelt there at the delta,
At the alpha and the omega,
I knelt there like one who believes.
And the blessings come from heaven
And for something like a second
I'm cured and my heart
Is at ease


Lyrics submitted by katerpillar77

"Light as the Breeze" as written by Leonard Cohen

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Light as the Breeze song meanings
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7 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentHe's *totally* talking about a transcendental experience. That's what the sex becomes for him, for a moment, a religious experience and one that heals and gives forgiveness. That moment is so beautiful, and yet so fragile and transient - light as a breeze in fact.
    tomhon March 11, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is THE most brilliant song about sex ever written by anybody.l
    tomhon July 28, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree. I listen to it and my hormones devour me.

    There are some phrases that I adore but are still an enigma to me, like:
    "...and it ain't exactly prison
    but you'll never be forgiven
    for whatever you've done
    with the keys."

    trackon November 19, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAn this phrase is magical:

    "And she says, Drink deeply, pilgrim
    but don't forget there's still a woman
    beneath this resplendent chemise."

    It makes me crazy. At the same time that there is this sublime thing you adore and fully submitt,
    there is still a woman...a human being like you!
    How can you compose both in your mind?
    You will try to be in the other's shoes, but you will never be.

    And the other way round if the submission is from someone to oneself. I doesn't match!
    trackon November 19, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAnd like a blessing come from heaven
    for something like a second
    I was healed and my heart
    was at ease

    I truely think he's relating a transcendental experience here. The rest I'll go with you two above, especially the second time this verse comes around.
    Majac00on February 21, 2011   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationLight as the Breeze – While these lyrics draw heavily on images of a relationship between a man and a woman, they are not about sex or the relationship between a man and a woman any more than Moby Dick is a story about fishing.
    This song is about the creative process:
    O baby I waited
    So long for your kiss
    For something to happen
    Oh, something like this.
    In this refrain, Cohen is talking about waiting for the “kiss” of inspiration from the creative Muse that resulted in these lyrics. The medium is truly the message here since the lyrics are about the creative process that goes into writing these very same lyrics.
    In stanza one (my references here are to each stanza as they appear excluding the above refrain) when the creative muse is present, she provides access to “the universe” (or “intention” or “spirit” or “the mind of God”) without pretense – she appears before you naked but she is ephemeral and elusive – she’s “light as the breeze.” How great or small the insights you get when she opens this portal are up to you but you must recognize who’s in charge – you must be humble.
    In stanza 2, Cohen kneels “…at the delta / At the alpha and omega” with all its imagery of female anatomy and its references to the cradle of civilization both of which conjure up images of creation and birth. This is where things are created and this is where things end – this is the creative portal. Through this portal, “For something like a second” he is cured and his heart is at ease – he gets the gift of creative access for which he has forgone so much and in which he has invested so much and, as brief as the inspiration is relative to all that he has to go through to receive it, it’s worth it.
    The reference to “sleeping in your harness” in stanza three refers to the trappings of everyday life that wall you off from the creative process. Wordsworth said (in “Ode, Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood”): “Earth [the temporal, natural world] doth all she can / To make her foster-child, her inmate Man, / Forget the glories he hath known, / And that imperial palace whence he came.” We sleep-walk in our everyday life while the rich flow of creativity with all its symbolism, insights and meaning is “…the wind going wild in the trees.” Like Wordsworth’s “inmate Man” mankind is not exactly in prison but, like the concept of original sin, we will never be forgiven for losing touch with our spiritual nature – we lost the key.
    Stanza four recognizes the agony of the creative process where long stretches of effort yield no result – the creative flow is freezing over and Cohen is frustrated.
    In Stanza five, the creative muse appears again, naked and apparently ready to give Cohen what he wants but that’s just a tease – she’s in control of the process and doesn’t always deliver, even when she makes an appearance. Cohen turns angrily from the muse and the creative process which is both his passion and the bane of his existence. Just as he is giving up, totally discouraged, she appears again, ready to inspire him – she cannot be summoned, she comes and goes as she pleases.
    In stanza 6, Cohen acknowledges he is a captive to the creative process. The blood on every bracelet may be his blood – the result of subjugating his temporal needs to his pursuit of spiritual or creative enlightenment (“…things undone, worldly activities not attended to…” – from Wordsworth). The muse encourages him to “drink deeply, pilgrim” which, while a religious reference to the Christian sacrament of holy communion is also, in the context of these lyrics, the process of receiving the “sacrament” of creativity (or Spirit). As with the Christian practice of receiving Holy Communion, one must be in a state of “grace” to partake of the creative process which is a fragile one and easily ended if taken for granted.
    Stanza 7 is a repeat of Stanza 2 followed by the fourth repeat of the refrain to hammer home the reminder that these lyrics are about the process of creating these same lyrics: “O baby I waited / So long for your kiss / For something to happen / Oh, something like this.” And again, Cohen reminds us in Stanza 7 that as brief as the inspiration is relative to all that he gives up to get it, it’s worth it.
    As long as this creative process results in lyrics like those in this song, I wholeheartedly agree: it’s well worth the effort.
    Bobkirk37on June 25, 2014   Link
  • 0
    Link(s)leonardcohenfiles.com/…
    Majac00on May 09, 2015   Link

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