[lit-ideas] Re: Got Home

  • From: John Wager <jwager@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 21 Jan 2012 08:00:31 -0600

Donal McEvoy wrote:
Though the song is not a theological argument, it does use certain key phrases (and avoids others). In conclusion, like many songs by Leonard, it is somewhat open-ended, here as to questions of the afterlife. There is nothing specific to indicate there is an afterlife after we have gone home, nor anything specific to deny that there is.

I agree. For a look at what WOULD be a more traditional look at "going home," I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned "Going Home" here. The words were added by someone else to Dvorak's "Largo" from Symph. #9 "From The New World." But it's a fairly standard hymn now. Here's the lyrics:

Going home, going home,
I'm just going home.
Quiet-like, slip away-
I'll be going home.
It's not far, just close by;
Jesus is the Door;
Work all done, laid aside,
Fear and grief no more.
Friends are there, waiting now.
He is waiting, too.
See His smile! See His hand!
He will lead me through.

Morning Star lights the way;
Restless dream all done;
Shadows gone, break of day,
Life has just begun.
Every tear wiped away,
Pain and sickness gone;
Wide awake there with Him!
Peace goes on and on!
Going home, going home,
I'll be going home.
See the Light! See the Sun!
I'm just going home.

To me, the Cohen lyrics are a direct response to this, with a much more nuanced and skeptical sensibility. I haven't heard this particular Cohen song (although I've got lots of his stuff) so maybe someone could say what the music of the song is like: Is it a "largo" like Dvorak's?
Perhaps even a partial "quote"?

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