Today conjures fond memories of Beltanes past when I danced the Maypole with friends.
Beltane is a Celtic fire and fertility festival, and is the last of the three spring fertility festivals, following Imbolc and Ostara. It marks the halfway point between the vernal (spring) equinox and the summer solstice. In ancient times, Beltane celebrated life, the end of the dark time of winter, the beginning of summer, and the virility of the Sun God, known during the festival as the May King or Green Man.
On May Eve, Druids lit the Bel fires (bright fires, balefires) for luck and protection. Witches jumped the flames to fortify the protection spells. Cattle were driven between the balefires to safeguard the herd.
I recreated a medieval Beltane festival in THE BELTANE ESCAPE, Book 1, The Two Realms Trilogy. Here's a small glimpse:
Near the top of the hill, two piles of wood were silhouetted against the sky. Cloaked figures, murmuring among themselves, lurked near the shadowy stacks. Druids.
Shouts and nervous laughter rang up and down the hill. Cattle on the moor protested loudly as they were nudged towards the lake.
Beltane forms the "ticking clock" in THE BELTANE ESCAPE.
Fenella, Thaness of Thorburn, branded, stolen, betrothed, and lured back centuries in time into Fairy, bears the key to everyone’s fate. She has nine days to cross a dangerous world of magic, unshackle herself from a sorceress, and return through time before her kidnapper destroys all she holds dear.
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/2zNAZP4
Happy Beltane and happy reading!