May Day Celebrations



The fire of the sun

In a spray of bright flowers

Spring turns to Summer

Petals float down from blue skies

Dancing with me in the breeze


May Day A spring holiday celebrated for millennia around the world, usually with flowers, crowning of a May Queen, and dancing around the maypole. Every country or region has its own specific customs.

Read more about May Day 🌺

Beltane An ancient fire festival marking the first day of summer (making Summer Solstice in June “midsummer” – Shakespeare, anyone?). Fires were used to represent the waxing sun and thought to provide protection and abundance for the coming season. The Green Man is often associated with this festival as are fairies and tree spirits.

Read more about Beltane 🌺

Lei Day In Hawaii, they celebrate Hawaiian culture and tradition with dancing and the giving of leis (necklaces made of flowers). Each island in this archipelago has its own distinct flower which is used to make the leis.

Read more about Lei Day 🌺


The May Queen

(an excerpt)

You must wake and call me early, call me early, mother dear;

To-morrow ’ll be the happiest time of all the glad new-year,β€”

Of all the glad new-year, mother, the maddest, merriest day;

For I ’m to be Queen o’ the May, mother, I ’m to be Queen o’ the May.


The honeysuckle round the porch has woven its wavy bowers,

And by the meadow-trenches blow the faint sweet cuckoo-flowers;

And the wild marsh-marigold shines like fire in swamps and hollows gray;

And I ’m to be Queen o’ the May, mother, I ’m to be Queen o’ the May.

~ Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Wishing you all joy on May Day!



32 thoughts on “May Day Celebrations

  1. Hi Sarah,
    Thanks for sharing these festivities. I heard on the news tonight that the Morris Dancers were celebrating to welcome spring – more appropriate to their home country than here, but anything for a party.
    We don’t have an official celebration here but many of us are welcoming the cooler days and evenings after a long hot summer. Today, in Queensland where I live, we had a public holiday for Labour Day which “commemorates the granting of the eight-hour working day for Australians. It also recognizes workers’ contributions towards the nation’s economy.” A day for workers to promote their rights.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I had to look up Morris Dancers. So cool! Welcoming spring is cause for celebration. (May Day is often celebrated in parts of the world where it’s not technically spring. The welcoming of spring has a long, rich history.) Yes, there are a few places around the world that have demonstrations and/or holidays for workers. I didn’t know Australia had one. Interesting.
      Thanks, Norah! Wishing you a beautiful day full of joy. 🌸🌼🌺

      Liked by 1 person

    • I know. It’s a shame, really. Such a lovely, fun, beautiful celebration of spring and summer. I’d love to go around on May 1st and see maypoles and ribbons and dancing everywhere.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Happy May Day! Unfortunately, the first of May has a bit more twisted reference at the Town’s End (See: Jonathan Coulton). Humorous, but not for young ears or eyes.

    Hope today is the start to a wonderful month!

    Liked by 1 person

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  4. I like the Hawaiian Lei Day method of celebrating – just the idea of being surrounded by all those beautiful blossoms and leis is exhilarating. What a wonderful way to welcome May and the spring. And they celebrate with live music, lei contests, hula performances, and more. My kind of fun. πŸ™‚ I’m so glad you shared this.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know. Can you imagine? The islands (and main celebration) are full of all kinds of flowers in different colors and with unique fragrances all mixed up and heavenly. And, yes, the dancing. A wonderful celebration. πŸŒΊπŸ’›πŸŒΌπŸ’šπŸŒΈ

      Liked by 1 person

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  6. Lovely post, Sarah. I guess the beginning of summer just doesn’t have the same significance it once had. Our lives are no longer ruled by the seasons. Our food is flown millions of miles or force-grown in heated greenhouses under electric light. We dont depend on the sun for warmth and light, and we can have mid-summer during the depths of winter if we get on a plane. But. All that said. The cycle of time has taken on new meaning for me once I became aware and aligned myself with the old Celtic calender. I don’t do anything specific to mark each occasion, but I’m aware of them. It makes me feel good. Just knowing that Spring has started, or summer makes me feel happy and positive. Same with mid-winter, the winter solstice, knowing the days are already getting longer and brighter even though we can’t at first see that, just seems to make the grey cold of winter more bearable. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • Right? All these seasonal holidays…none of them have quite the same significance as they once had. Like you said, we’re not ruled by them, our lives don’t literally depend on them. But I completely agree. That cycle has great meaning. I am so aware of them and can feel/appreciate the change in each season. I love the feeling of being to connected to nature. πŸŒΊπŸ’›πŸŒΌπŸ’šπŸŒΈ (Yes! LOVE mid-winter. And can’t wait for mid-summer!)


    • It is sloppy. πŸ˜‰ It really is. But…”April showers bring May flowers” or something. Yes, it really can be beautiful with shoots sprouting and flowers budding. (I know…that tree! It was gorgeous though it only lasted for a few days. Still. I have the photo.) 🌸

      Liked by 1 person

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