Photo by Roz Kelly/Getty Images
Photo by Roz Kelly/Getty Images

Dear Mr. Cohen,

It’s hard to pinpoint the moment I first heard your voice. It was likely on one of my sister’s epic mix tapes—she exposed me to all the greats, and you were the complete embodiment of that. The way you lived your life, the way you sung, the way you dressed, the way you wrote about love, death, politics, and sadness—this all had such a profound effect on me during my formative years.

You were a seductive, romantic, self-deprecating, philosophical, fortuneteller, and the ultimate music messiah. All great artists sacrifice a bit of themselves, and every piece of work created felt like a personal offering. It’s quite doubtful that there’ll ever be an individual who could come close to showing the same level of integrity that you did. Your exit couldn’t have happened at a more poetic time, and I’d never expect anything less. And above everything, Leonard Cohen, you taught me that, “love’s the only engine of survival.”

Forever thankful,

Sahar Nooraei