Hallelujah.

Part of being a Creative Writing Major is you see poetry everywhere. When asked this morning what my favorite poem was, I made my 28 year old professor laugh by responding, “Hallelujah.” Originally written by Leonard Cohen, made famous by John Cale, revamped by Jeff Buckley, and made into poetry by Rufus Wainwright, this ballad of love abused and lost signifies, for me, the ultimate form of poetry. The following is my favorite version of the song, performed by Jeff Buckley in 1994.

Now I’ve heard there was a secret chord

That David played and it pleased the Lord,

but you don’t really care for music, do you?

It goes like this: the fourth, the fifth, the minor fall, the major lift

The baffled King composes Hallelujah.

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.

Your faith was strong but you needed proof

You saw her bathing on the roof

Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you

She tied you to a kitchen chair

She broke your throne

She cut your hair

And from your lips, she drew the Hallelujah.

Baby, I have been here before

I’ve seen this room, I’ve walked this floor

I used to live alone before I knew you.

I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch,

and love is not a victory march,

it’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah.

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.

There was a time when you’d let me know,

What’s really going on below,

But now you never show it to me, do you?

Well, remember when I moved in you,

The holy dove was moving, too,

And every breath we drew was Hallelujah.

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.

Maybe there’s a God above,

But all I’ve ever learned from love

Was how to shoot somebody who outdrew you.

It’s not a cry you can hear at night,

It’s not somebody who’s seen the light,

It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah.

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.

Now tell me that’s not poetry.

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