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Leonard Cohen’s Final Book of Poetry, The Flame, to Be Published Next Year

INDIO, CA - APRIL 17: Singer/musician Leonard Cohen performs during day 1 of the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival held at the Empire Polo Club on April 17, 2009 in Indio, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

UK publisher Canongate has just announced that a posthumous volume of Leonard Cohen‘s poetry, The Flame, will be released in October of next year. It will be published by Farrar, Strauss, and Giroux in the United States. According to the publisher, Cohen finished assembling the book himself in the months prior to his death in November of last year. As The Guardian reports, the “overwhelming majority” of The Flame will consist of new Cohen poems, and that Cohen drew from unreleased notebook sketches. The volume will also incorporate lyrics from his last three albums, as well as words he wrote for the 2006 album Blue Alert by Anjani, Cohen’s former backing singer, co-songwriter, and girlfriend.

Cohen’s former manager, Robert Kory, spoke further about the creation and themes of volume to The Guardian:

“During the final months of his life, Leonard had a singular focus – completing this book, taken largely from his unpublished poems and selections from his notebooks. The flame and how our culture threatened its extinction was a central concern. Though in declining health, Leonard died unexpectedly. Those of us who had the rare privilege of spending time with him during this period recognised that the flame burned bright within him to the very end. This book, finished only days before his death, reveals to all the intensity of his inner fire.”

Cohen released his last full volume of new poetry, Book of Longing, in 2006.