Here’s a simple gift:
‘Tis the gift to be simple, ’tis the gift to be free,
‘Tis the gift to come down, where we ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
“Twill be in the valley of love and delight.
When true simplicity is gain’d,
To bow and to bend we shan’t be ashamed,
To turn, turn will be our delight
Till by turning, turning we come round right.
Those are the words to a traditional Shaker melody, glorified here by Aaron Copland:
I like that it was originally a song, not a hymn, and contains dance instructions toward the end.
And so it goes, that when we read and listen, the gift grows deeper as it is received. Giving and receiving merge into a seamless, complex thing of wonder.
It’s simple: complex gifts are my preference.