Not all the tortuous explanations in the world will make any sense out of
"past my laughing stock." It's a lost cause.
Quite right, luv!
(I can say "luv" because I'm not british and I know you know I don't mean it.)
(Although you have come close to being funny (perhaps intentionally)
a couple of times recently. Which is surreptitiously seductive.)
On the other hand it is actually very easy to explain,
and to appreciate,
what Leonard Cohen is actually singing,
The time is long gone
Past my laughing star
-- re: what
Antoine de Saint-Exupery wrote:
The little prince told Antoine
At night, when you look up at the sky,
since I shall be living on a star,
and since I shall be laughing on a star,
for you it will be as if all the stars are laughing.
You alone will have stars that can laugh!
And when you have got over your loss
(for we always do),
you’ll be happy to have known me.
You will always be my friend.
You will want to laugh with me.
In fact I'm pretty sure LC wanted "laughing star"
more than "cock of the walk",
because he doesn't actually sing "cock of the walk",
but something more like "cock ah the wah"
(to rhyme with "star".)
Anyone who ever loved Wilfred Owen can appreciate
the (very)-off-(internal)-rhyme: walk/star, but there aren't very many of us.
So if LC really is going for a pop hit with this,
he'll probably wind up being more blatant.
In any case it will be facinating to see how he resolves it!
(listening again, maybe he's singing:
"I used to be strong
Cock of the war
But time is long gone
Past my laughing star"
Which is off-rhyme too,
but easier. And topical.)