how do we hold on to the happy? in the week since i've returned to l.a. from living in the adirondacks, i've found it challenging at times to know how to hold on to the sense of internal peace i carried so easily out in the middle of simple, snowy nowhere, with nothing but your own breath to hear for hours at a time.
do we have to drop out of life a little? do we have to wrap our calm like a magic cloak around us?
is it unsafe, or silly, or nerdy, to really be in love with tranquilty and the magic of life so much that it puts us out of step with the world around us?
a beautiful old shaker song has been running through my mind like a mantra since i had my morning coffee, while i sat on my front porch and pondered. it goes like this:
'tis a gift to be simple. 'tis a gift to be free.
'tis a gift to come down where we ought to be.
and when we find ourselves in the place just right,
we will be in the valley of love and delight.
when true simplicity is gained,
to bow and to bend we shan't be ashamed
to turn, turn will be our delight
'til by turning and turning we come 'round right.
those crazy happy shakers knew a thing or two, huh? they really believed that singing and dancing was a great way to get down with god. they also believed in totally separating men and women, and that the second coming of christ had already happened and that christ II was a lady called mother-ann.
it's so much simpler than i thought. i think i'm going to forego all other front-porch ponderings. and if i feel out of step, i will just turn, turn, until i feel as happy as i look in this picture.