Culture

Poetry Corner: Beltane Friends

Through the brightly coloured silken fronds, swirling

and plaiting around the old ship’s mast,

flashes a vision: Fresh-faced young sailor,

            dancing the hornpipe.

*

Now, with grey beard and boots strapped tightly, to hold

aching ankles, your legs again take flight,

sending you skipping, with pigtail flying,

            around the maypole.

*

My smile meets yours, as we duck and weave, ribbons

of laughter flicker through the dusk,

squeezed accordion notes impel our feet

            on to the end.

*

Beltane fires send out sparks, like shooting stars, and

light up glowing faces, raised in prayer,

ignite hope in our hearts, for we leap, hands clasped,

            over the embers.

*

When we leave, the ritual ended, you are lighter

of step, although tired, we are wreathed in serene smiles,

a dark shadow has lifted, dancing strangers become friends,

            in the magic of

               this night.

Wendy Alford         11th May 2011

Beltane face in the trees

credit: Bernie Bell

Thank you to Bernie Bell for sending in this poem by Wendy Alford 

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