Tag Archives: PD Beltane 15

Poetry Competition – Wining Poems

poetryWe had some great poems submitted for our Summer poetry competition and after much thinking we have 2 winners.  Our runner up is Dylan from North Yorkshire

The Summer Solstice
It was 3 0 clock in the morning in the circle
and everyone was yawning waiting for the sun
for when it rose they would have some fun and worship the Gods all the day long.

Our Book winning first prize winner is Berry from Dorset and here is their wonderful poem.

BELTAiNE.

Beltaine is the turning
Beltaine is the first of May,
Beltaine is the changing
From the dark to the lighter way.

Beltaine has a Maypole
We dance and weave around the staff,
Beltaine is a happy time
For people to sing and laugh.

Flames are roaring
From the hills
With magic and intentions,
From their ancestral wills.

The flowers are spreading round in a circle
Forming the shape of a delicate crown,
They’re all different colours, some of delicate purple,
Casting the earth with a scented gown.

The shimmering blossoms are on the trees,
Fragrant like the honey of bees.
The circle of life!
This is Beltaine.
The circle of life!
Turns round again.

 

A warm welcome from the Children and Families team.

We are a new and developing team within the PD family and hope to grow over the coming seasons.  We would like to share with you the kind of things that are going on in our homes and forests as we celebrate our paths with our children.  Hopefully you will take some inspiration from us, whether you are parents or carers yourself, as we explore the world and our spirituality through the experiences of our children.

Spring Grow

In the spring when everything is busting out, it seems that my kids have spent the whole winter in horse manure and have chosen now to grow a requisite six inches. Whether sun or snow, the kids will grow.

Not only that, but my warm and cuddly lads have turned into miniature teenagers overnight. They are like little narcissi, small bright and full of ‘tude. Growth is one of those elements that we seem to measure from the time our babies are small, we worry about it, compare it, and all the time they seem to keep doing it – in the spring though we notice it because everything around us is growing and pushing forth. Our child’s spring grow is often accompanied with a testosterone surge, so as parents and caregivers what can we do to channel this glorious upsurge of spring’s energy as winter finally gives way, and the earth awakens?

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Beltane – May Day – This is the most beautiful time of year.

hawthorn 2The birds are singing, there is a hint of warmth in the air and all the hedgerows seem to be bursting with new life. The hedgerow is a place of infinite possibility at this time of year, if you make a trip to the countryside you will witness the capacity of our hedgerows to be habitat, boundary, larder, shelter, and a place of wonder for all manner of creatures, insects and spirits.

This is also the only time you can bring May (Hawthorne) blossom into the house without risking the hostility of the Gentle Folk! My (Hannah’s) boys have been fascinated with Maying traditions – and the idea that there is a flower that can only be brought to the house one time a year is so potent to them, that on May morning they want to go cut the May and attach it to the door before breakfast! We bring the may blossom from the Hawthorne to bless the house, using it to sprinkle water around the boundary and often we use it to decorate a wreath that will hang on our door across the Beltane period. Further, we build an altar to the Sidhe at this time, and honor the great powerful spirits that roam our land.  Fairies are not small fluffy things with wings I remind them, but the great and gracious spirits of the places we live in and as such deserve the honouring at Maytime, with bud and blossom and thorn.

Morning blessings are really lovely to use on spring morning:

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How to build a Maypole

hawthorn 2 We built a Maypole last year for our Family gathering in Thetford forest.  Much fun and hilarity was had, but a week or so later when I (Sam) went to unwind our ribbons and reclaim my staff she realised the power the children had raised into the staff and quickly took it outside to send their energy back into the Earth, and my garden, with a heartfelt blessing.

The building was quite simple.  My staff is just under 6 ft tall and quite straight so was perfect.  We got 4 different coloured ribbons, about 5m of each, and attached the middles of them to the top using hair bands.

During our ritual one of the Dads sat in the middle holding the staff upright and all the children, and most of the other grown-ups too, took a hand in dancing round the maypole.  We did do lots of weaving over and under our dance partners, but it was very clear that we would never be able to dance it unwound again.  Voices were raised clear and true and feet tripped out a merry jig under the trees in Thetford Forest.  Our intent was solid, even if our dancing was a little haphazard and prone to giggling.Maypole 2

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Poetry Competition.

Hannah has written a beautiful Pagan A to Z, which you can read here, and it got us thinking that there had to be tons of talented children out there.  Sam’s daughter has just finished reading a fantastic series of books based on Druid principles and full of magic and adventure.  Golden AcornYou can read a review of the books by Raven here.  However, we would love to share the first book of the series with a lucky child and think a poetry competition would be the perfect way to find that child.  If Awen finds you before Summer solstice, please email Sam with your poem, your name address and age and the best poem will win a paperback copy of “The Golden Acorn” by Catherine Cooper.

Terms and Conditions

Entrants must be under 16 on 21st June 2015.

Entries should be emailed to children.families@paganfederation.co.uk by June 21st 2015, with the child’s name, age, postal address and the name and contact phone number of a parent or carer.

Entries will be judged by Sam & Hannah and the winner will be notified by the July 15th 2015. The prize is one paperback copy of The Golden Acorn by Catherine Cooper, no alternative prize is available.

By entering the competition you are giving permission for the Pagan Federation to publish the poem and the first name of the poet (and their age) both online and in print.  Copyright for the poem remains with the poet.

The Golden Acorn

Golden AcornThe Golden Acorn by Catherine Copper was a lucky find on Amazon for us.  I think it was a free kindle download, it really was a gift from the Gods.  There are 5 books in the series which follows the adventures of Jack Brennin as he discovers that he has been chosen for a very important task.  Helped by the druids Nora and Elan and the talking Raven Camelin; Jack enters a world of magic, Myth and British Folklore.  It is well written and completely engaging for adults and children alike.

Here is what my daughter Raven (9) thought about the books.

The Golden Acorn:  Very AWESOME book.

I think this is a great book because you never want to stop reading it and the plot is amazing I would recommend it for all ages above 8 and its the book you want if you like magic.

The Oak Lord (book 5): Unexpected ending

Soooooooo cool. Jack is King!  Read about him finding the lost treasure of Awern.  Camlin grumbles some more and Jack makes new friends.