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Six links and a poem:
Happy Beltane to all! 🌿If flowers and greenery are around, you can celebrate like the Celts and bring green branches and flowers into your home, and decorate your doorsteps to celebrate the coming of summer. 🌻
Although it’s a blustery day and it will still be weeks before it turns green at this latitude, the birches are swaying their branches in anticipation. I loved reading about the importance of birches in Scottish folklore, and their loose association with Beltane at Trees for Life, a project focused on the rewilding of Scotland.
I’m so often surprised at how conversations with strangers can be so memorable—a chance encounter that feels more akin to a prophecy, a way of seeing things that you hadn’t seen before. And so when I discovered a site that connects strangers seeking advice with anonymous elders, I was intrigued. I wrote for advice, and the letter I received back was memorable, needed, and kind. I love this idea of advice from anonymous elders, wisdom coming simply because one seeks it.
I’m late to this project, but the Poetry Society of New York celebrated May Day during the pandemic by pairing poets with a first line and a last, passing back and forth from each line among two strangers via email to create a sonnet. Such a beautiful idea.
I was intrigued to find Found, a site that collects found writing and compiles it into zines.
A similar project, PostSecret, has strangers send anonymous postcards with a secret—many of which are bawdy, scary, hilarious, and often surprising, so many confessions of the ways we are conditioned to mask what we really feel.
I may be repeating myself on this one, but I loved learning about medieval fight books (battle of the sexes indeed).
It seems May is a time that poets cannot help but write rejoicing poems of spring:
May Night The spring is fresh and fearless And every leaf is new, The world is brimmed with moonlight, The lilac brimmed with dew. Here in the moving shadows I catch my breath and sing-- My heart is fresh and fearless And over-brimmed with spring. —Sara Teasdale
Cannot believe that in three weeks, this view will change from brown to green. May is indeed magic.