Forget Your Perfect Offering

The Bird Sings Oral Tradition Song Library

Forget Your Perfect Offering

A simple and inspiring, mostly echo-and-response song adapted from Leonard Cohen’s famous “Anthem” lyrics.

Composer & Copyright

Lyrics adapted from Leonard Cohen, musical attribution unknown.


Recorded by Lisa G. Littlebird.

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Forget your perfect offering
Ring the bells that you can ring
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in

Teaching Notes

The first time teaching this with a group of singers I simply slow it way down and tell people to echo back what I sing, while being extra, super-duper clear about when they sing, then stopping briefly before the last line to introduce that one. Singers tend to catch on quick. This song works great with drumming or hand percussion.

For interest and challenge, I keep moving the key up by a 1/2 step. I’ve also sung this with guitar accompaniment, transposing the song up a 4th with each repetition.


Level of teaching speed/ difficulty (1 = very easy, 10 = very challenging)



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