If you want a boxer
I will step into the ring for you
And if you want a doctor
I’ll examine every inch of you
From I’m Your Man
By Leonard Cohen
It turns out that not only is Leonard Cohen’s I’m Your Man album dedicated to Dominique Issermann but the title song is also populated by men from Dominique’s love life.
Don’t tell me that saying ‘I’m Your Man’ is a complicated thing, but who said it before and like [Leonard Cohen]? I can tell an anecdote that will make him laugh if he reads it. In this song, all the men who are mentioned are friends of mine, maybe more or less exes, we don’t really know: ‘If I wanna be a boxer:’ I had a boyfriend boxer; ‘If I wanna be a doctor:’ another was a doctor… We laughed a lot at that.
From Ma vie avec Leonard Cohen : “Je l’ai entendu travailler deux ans sur ‘Hallelujah'” par François Armanet et Bernard Loupias (L’Obs: Nov 11, 2016). Interview originally published in “Le Nouvel Observateur” of January 26, 2012. Thanks to Coco Éclair for the French to English translation.
Thanks also go to Cohencentric viewer, Uli, who, accompanied by her Swiss sidekick, attended the 2009 Leonard Cohen Colmar Concert where she shot the stellar photo of Leonard Cohen wearing boxing gloves and a stethoscope that were flung onto the stage during his performance of I’m Your Man.
Note: “If I wanna be a boxer” and “If I wanna be a doctor” are not, of course, the exact lyrics from I’m Your Man. Those words are, however, a reasonable translation of Dominique Issermann’s responses as recorded in this interview.
I am republishing selected posts from my former Leonard Cohen site, Cohencentric, here on AllanShowalter.com (these posts can be found at Leonard Cohen). This entry was originally posted May 15, 2018.