Edgar Allan Poe: May Queen Ode

Children doing maypole dancing in the Canungra Showgrounds (ca. 1934) – State Library of Queensland

About April 1836, Harriet Virginia Scott, a schoolgirl in Richmond, asked Edgar Allan Poe to compose a poem for her to recite to the Queen of May. He complied by writing four or five stanzas. About eighty years later (between 1911 and 1917), she remembered one of them and sent it to J. H. Whitty, who published it in the second edition of Complete Poems (1917). CONTINUE READING / CONTINUER LA LECTURE…

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Aleister Crowley: The May Queen

Children maypole dancing (1900–1910) – State Library of Queensland

Before being devoted to the labour movement, May Day was an old Celtic celebration of spring and fertility, Beltane; throughout the centuries it evolved, with the maypole dancing by girls and the election of the May Queen, but it kept its hidden symbolism of youthful love. Crowley’s poem gives it back its ancient pagan meaning. CONTINUE READING / CONTINUER LA LECTURE…

Jean Aicard : La Reine de Mai

May Queen, New Westminer, British Columbia, Canada (c.1887) - from Wikipedia

May Queen, New Westminer, British Columbia, Canada (c.1887) – from Wikipedia

Des traditions populaires ont longtemps été associées au 1er mai, avant qu’il ne soit devenu le symbole du mouvement ouvrier ; certaines d’entre elles sont héritées des fêtes religieuses antérieures au christianisme, comme celle de Beltaine chez le Celtes, célébrant le renouveau et l’amour. Ainsi des jeunes (ou petites) filles s’habillent en blanc et on élit parmi elles la “Reine de Mai”. Les filles peuvent aussi danser autour d’un poteau, “L’Arbre de Mai”. CONTINUE READING…