A place to begin from

The buildings, doorways, sidewalk cracks, city trees shone bright and precise. He was where he was, all of him, beside a dry-cleaning store, high on the smell of clean brown-wrapped clothes. He was nowhere else. In the window was a secular bust of a man with a chipped plaster shirt and a painted tie. It didn’t remind him of anything when he stared at it. He was wildly happy to be where he was. Clean and empty, he had a place to begin from, this particular place. He could choose to go anywhere but he didn’t have to think about that because here he was and every free deep breath was a beginning. For a second he lived in a real city, one that had a mayor and garbage men and statistical records. For one second.

— Leonard Cohen, from The Favourite Game

2 responses to “A place to begin from

  1. He who binds to himself a joy
    Does the wingèd life destroy;
    But he who kisses the joy as it flies
    Lives in eternity’s sunrise.

    — William Blake

  2. He who binds to himself a joy
    Does the wingèd life destroy;
    But he who kisses the joy as it flies
    Lives in eternity’s sunrise.

    — William Blake

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