The end of time

I hadn’t made the connection before, but this piece and just thinking of Riga makes me hum Leonard Cohen’s “Dance Me to the End of Love.”

Found a video of him singing itand finally figured out how to embed it! Yay! 

This version is my favourite,from Austin City Limits in 1988. He looks much like when I saw him last year – his voice even more of a gravelly crackle but still so emotional. Love the violins, and the lyrics and the whole beauty of it.

My dancers’ dresses are all wrong for the song, and even for the piece, but I didn’t choose them. I shot the photos in Riga, Latvia – not quite Vienna, but not as far off as you might think…

There was something about Riga that I can’t quite name. I was only there for a few days, a little side trip during a fortnight spent in Tallinn (I am half Estonian…) Of course I adored Tallinn, all the medieval nooks and crannies, almost perfectly preserved, wonderful for exploring and dreaming and feeling history lingering in the aether…

But Latvia, Riga… messy, crumbling, passionate, delicious, dirty, noisy, lusty, vibrant – it was like falling into some ancient groove that played out over and over. Irresistable. Cheap, spooky, the stench of cigarettes and stale beer, tawdry affairs and passionate poets with mussed up hair. I think it was how I imagined Paris would be, though if Paris was ever that way those days are long long gone.

Viva Riga! Viva the dance. Dance me to the end of time…

…telling tales from around the world


Published by Titirangi Storyteller

Telling tales from around the world

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