Saturday, May 3, 2008
According to those in the know (my beloved, who does incredibly thorough astronomical/astrological research), tonight is the official Lunar Beltane.
Beltane is a "cross-quarter" day -- the day between the Solstice and the Equinox (or the Equinox and the Solstice). These days aren't celebrated much anymore -- more's the pity.
When I was a kid, "May Day" (5/1) was a big deal. We would make little paper cones and staple on little paper handles, and fill them with lilacs and spirea, and leave them hanging on neighbor's door-handles. Nowadays, I'm not sure that people would even recognize the "May Basket" tradition.
There was no candy involved, as with Halloween and Valentine's Day, but for me, this was still a very sweet holiday.
The recipients of our May Baskets were friends in child-form, adult-form, and elder-form. It wasn't one of those holidays where you stuck around to find out if they had opened their door and seen your offering. You hung the basket and ske-daddled.
There were, however, usually lacey dresses involved -- often the "Easter Dress" from some weeks before. You can imagine how that sat with me, Ms. Butchy of 1965.
Thinking back, I can imagine those lilacs poking up from the paper cones. We didn't deliver them with water-vials attached to their stems -- these were wonders to come as we approached our brave new future -- so they must have faded pretty quickly.
But at the time, I was young and hopeful, and probably never gave a thought as to whether the cuttings would be wilted by the time that resident discovered them.
Happy really May Day, everyone.
Just ignore the terminology.
Posted byPortlyDyke at 11:34 PM