Celebrating Beltaine, Dancing the Maypole

The Grove performs a maypole dance at Beltaine 2009

Today was the feast of Beltaine, a rite of shining summer and the budding life coming back into full blossom and bloom. The rite was led by Shawneen.

The beings of the occasion were Belenos and Belisama, and we were forced to work under the shelter since there was no fire pit outside, only a fireplace inside (the metropark had just finished remodeling the Hickory Grove shelter we were using). This worked out well, though, as the area was quite muddy and the folk were able to gather beneath the roof and our celebrants could be heard much better.

This was a wonderful rite, and we had many people dance the maypole (I believe we ended with around 20 people trying to weave in and out). We worked heavily with fire, calling on Two Fires instead of the usual “watery” and “starry” powers of the Two Powers, and they were a fire of Inspiration and a fire of Sacrifice.

As we drew omens, our seer indicated the following were offered to us by the Kindreds:

  • Have our offerings been accepted?
    Emancoll, The Witch Hazel: Magical protection. . . that would be a heck yes!
  • What blessings do the kindred have or us?
    Phagos, The Beech: Ancient and ancestral knowledge, particularly written
  • What more do the Kindreds ask of us?
    Ngetal, The Broom: The Kindreds ask us to cleanse ourselves and to heal ourselves and those that apply for healing.

Further, our seer informs us: “Taken together this might suggest: Magically protected and with the ancient knowledge we are called upon to cleanse and heal ourselves and the folk!”

These are good omens indeed! The energy from the maypole was sent back into the earth, to heal our Mother, as She is hurting now, particularly around the Gulf coast.

In addition, if you missed it, I was a featured guest last week on BlogTalk Radio, talking about ADF. You can find the archive at http://bit.ly/bkT20r (Apr. 25th show), and the Grove spent the day at the Ohio State University Rennaissance Faire practicing divination and enjoying good company on May 1st.

May the bright fires of inspiration and sacrifice burn within all this Beltaine season!
-Rev. Michael J Dangler