Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Whatever happened to the First day of May?

That's the festival of Beltane in the Celtic calendar: a holiday when wiccans and pagans would perform strange rituals to protect their crops and livestock.
  • Folk donned their finest outfits and would parade and sing in the streets.
  • Cattle were decorated with May blossoms.
  • Fair maidens danced around poles. This was an innocent, intricate and collaborative effort that has nothing to do with pole-dancing, nor eastern Europeans being the centre of attention.
  • Daring males built bonfires and demonstrated their courage by leaping over the burning embers. Such dangerous activity was believed to encourage growth and fertility.

It all went downhill from there.

In 1973, Robin Hardy directed the disturbing, X-rated film The Wicker Man, (not for the faint-hearted!)

Then came 1977.
This was number 2 in the UK pop charts ...


Good tune, though!
Stirring stuff, eh?

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