Flora gave me fairest flowers

It’s almost May, and all around the blogosphere I hear the yearly cries. On the one hand, witches and pagans of various kinds anticipating the arrival of Beltane, festival of flowers fertility and fucking fun; on the other, Irish and Scottish polytheists and devotees of faery lore decrying Beltane as being utterly unlike Bealtaine, the Gaelic fire festival when wells are dressed and cattle are blest because the Fair Folk are abroad.

And in the middle, your humble blogger, not particularly caring because I’m not celebrating either Beltane or Bealtaine. As a devotee of Antinous and the Roman pantheon, I’m celebrating the Floralia from April 28th to May 3rd, in honor of the goddess Flora, and the Floralia is unequivocally a festival of flowers, fertility, and fun. There were plays and spectacles, gladiatorial games, brightly colored clothes, releasing of hares and goats, throwing beans and flowers at people, and even nude dancing and mock gladiator combats between prostitutes, as well as (no doubt) a lot of eating, drinking, and making whoopee.

I’m going to observe Floralia by (eating, drinking, and) reposting some of my poems for the goddess from my older blog, along with music I associate with the season. To kick things off, here’s our titular madrigal sung by the Cambridge Singers.