The Marianne Variations: Leonard Cohen’s “If You Leave Where Will I Keep You Then?” Version Of So Long, Marianne

Leonard Cohen’s Recurring Revisions Of So Long, Marianne

The Marianne Variations is a series of posts devoted to the major recurring variations of Leonard Cohen’s “So Long, Marianne” that significantly differ from the versions found on the Songs Of Leonard Cohen and Field Commander Cohen albums. An introduction and links to all published posts in this series as well as the inclusion criteria and the original version of “So Long, Marianne” from the Songs Of Leonard Cohen album can be found at The Marianne Variations Summary Page.

The “If You Leave Where Will I Keep You Then?” Version Of So Long, Marianne

The following stanza, printed in the Songs Of Leonard Cohen Songbook and the booklet from the Leonard Cohen Greatest Hits (aka The Best Of Leonard Cohen) album, is the final verse of the rendition recorded in Paris in Spring 1968 and broadcast on BBC2 TV in 1968:

If you leave where will I keep you then?
In my heart, as some men say.
And I, who was born to love everyone,
Why should I keep you so far away?


Leonard Cohen – So Long, Marianne
London BBC: 1968
The pertinent verse begins at 6:40
Video from messalina79


Credit Due Department: Photo from York University Libraries, Clara Thomas Archives & Special Collections, Toronto Telegram fonds, F0433, Photographer: John Sharp, ASC01709.

I am republishing selected posts from my former Leonard Cohen site, Cohencentric, here on (these posts can be found at Leonard Cohen). This entry was originally posted July 16, 2014 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric.

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