Emmy Lou Harris and Linda Ronstadt recorded it here
Although I couldn't find it on You Tube there is great version by Dion if you happen to have Spotify. There is, of course, a great difference between lyrics and poetry but Leonard Cohen's lyrics can often be read as poetry:
Oh the sisters of mercy, they are not departed or gone.
They were waiting for me when I thought that I just can't go on.
And they brought me their comfort and later they brought me this song.
Oh I hope you run into them, you who've been travelling so long.
Yes you who must leave everything that you cannot control.
It begins with your family, but soon it comes around to your soul.
Well I've been where you're hanging, I think I can see how you're pinned:
When you're not feeling holy, your loneliness says that you've sinned.
Well they lay down beside me, I made my confession to them.
They touched both my eyes and I touched the dew on their hem.
If your life is a leaf that the seasons tear off and condemn
they will bind you with love that is graceful and green as a stem.
When I left they were sleeping, I hope you run into them soon.
Don't turn on the lights, you can read their address by the moon.
And you won't make me jealous if I hear that they sweetened your night:
We weren't lovers like that and besides it would still be all right,
We weren't lovers like that and besides it would still be all right.
The story, according to Leonard Cohen, is that he let a couple of girl hitch-hikers use his double-bed in a motel on a cold winter's night in Canada and, while they slept, he wrote the song in one go. He said that was the only time he wrote in that way.