"I've never danced a Maypole dance before." Ceri watched as some young men emerged from the surrounding woods carrying a long slender tree trunk. They wound ribbons around the top and carefully slid the trunk into the hole, letting the ribbons fly free in the afternoon breeze.
Looking at the fields beyond the festival site, Ceri noticed it was full of different varieties of flowers. The heady scent of their bouquet wafted toward her on the breeze and as the wind brushed her face, she felt a tingle run down her back. All of her teachings came back to her and she felt the pull of the earth reach up and tether her to this place. She had never felt anything like it.
"It's beautiful isn't it?" Marilyn smiled and pointed in the direction of the flower fields. "My family has farmed this land for generations. Here, surrounded by the woods, we have been able to hold on to the old customs and keep our traditions strong. Beltane is one of my favorite Sabbats. Celebrating life and all it has to offer is what it's all about, after all."
"Sounds like a good idea to me." Ceri let her gaze travel across the young men and women gathering in front of the pole that was now firmly lodged in the ground. She sent up a silent prayer to the Goddess that there would be someone for her when twilight took over and the fires wove their seductive magic.
"Come, we must get seated. It's almost time for the festivities to begin."
A gathering of young men with fiddles began to play a smoldering tune and the crowd began to rally around the Maypole. Ceri smiled and let the rhythm of the stirring music settle into her bones.
Marilyn handed her a cup of spiced wine from the table nearby and they made their way to the action.