Beltain 2023

1 hawthorn

2 hawthorn

3 hawthorn (2)

New greenery everywhere,
White buds ready to burst into flower --
Hawthorn on May Day.

It’s May Day or if you follow an older ancient tradition, Beltain.  The Hawthorn is just beginning to show a few flowers and my heart rejoices to know the Earth’s energies are stirring.  I’m happy to celebrate this quickening of fertility and growth in my verse!  Today is warmer and with many damp weeks behind us the flowers and trees are sending us a message: the summer is here!

In my attempts to write these 3 line verses I follow the ancient agricultural calendar which is also the Hokku calendar.* 

In the Celtic Tree Ogham, Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna) is the sixth tree: Huath, H. and it brings the spirit of wild places, even when growing in a town.  As the seasons change I hope to include more references to the Tree Ogham.**


Happy Beltain, a time when Earth’s energies are at their most active.  The Earth is alive, not just at the surface but in its depths.


[So much of what I am learning about traditional Earth celebrations is down to the writings of Glennie Kindred and I give thanks to her for her love and blessings which I am returning to her through my verse]


* Through David Coomler’s wonderful writings on WordPress I continue to learn about Hokku.



42 thoughts on “Beltain 2023

  1. Thank you, Ashley, for the beautiful Ode to Spring! I have so many things flowering in my garden, planted especially for my bumble bees and others to enjoy after waking up after winter. I also have Hawthorn, and the scent in the air is already wonderful with all the plants flowering.


    1. Dear Joanna, thank you for your visit to my blog; it is always good to hear from you. I should write! Your garden sounds amazing (I know it is from your posts) and if I can continue to add the flowers and plants that pollinators enjoy to my tiny garden, I know that I’m also helping the planet. 💓🌹💓💌🙋‍♂️

      1. Dear Ashley, I always read your blog when it arrives in front of me. Just a thought, if there are walls of some sort in your small garden, you could go vertically and have containers (not round ones) fixed to them.

        You could grow many plants in them, provided they are watered. Apart from herbs and salads, many flowers would be happy to grow this way.

        The bees would be so happy!


    1. Thank you, Rudi. I’ve been making the Ogham sticks for a while and hope I can include many more of them in my celebrations of the Earth. Have a great summer! 🙋‍♂️

    1. Thank you, Michael. I’ve been working on creating a set of 20 Ogham sticks, each stick in the wood of the letter. Fingers crossed I will be able to complete the set. 🙋‍♂️

  2. Beannachtai na Bealtaine! The return of the Light! [here’s to that by the way, in many ways! ;-)]
    Thank you for the wonderful earth celebration with your beautiful haiku and hawthorn photos!
    Happy May, my friend! 🙏🌸🔆

    1. Dear Marina, you know where my heart lies! It is my wish to write about the trees that I so love and their connections to all of us. I know that you know what I’m talking about and send my blessings to you and yours.🌹💌🙋‍♂️

  3. Nice photos and hokku! I like your stick carvings. I like that the Tree Ogham brings the spirit of wild places! We’re going to try to go to a nearby park to celebrate Beltain ’23 or May Day. I’m going to see if I can ID any hawthorns along the way. I think it’s important to celebrate the eight landmarks of the year, to show our appreciation for nature. Happy First Day of Summer, Carol & Ashleaf!!

    1. Thanks, Ed, let me know if you find any Hawthorns! As you know, I’ve been making the Ogham sticks for a while and being involved with a green-woodworking club has helped great🙋‍♂️ly. I’m now working towards the Summer Solstice in June….watch this space!

  4. Happy Beltane, Ashley! Your Hawthorns are growing in nicely, and I loved seeing your beautiful spring photos. Summer is finally around the corner for us as well, we are having similar weather here in New England. ☀️

    Our flowers aren’t doing so well this year because we have a wild bunny issue, and they keep eating our flower buds before they have a chance to grow. At least I can enjoy seeing you’re garden blossom!🌷🦋😊

    1. Dear Jennifer, thank you for your visit. Oh no! Rabbits! I see them here at the edges of the cultivated fields but I’m not sure I’d like them in the garden. The Hawthorn in my garden hedge is not yet in flower so the photos above were taken on my local walks. 🤗🌹🙋‍♂️

      1. Oh and I watched the Changing Planet ep1 and heard of the singing reefs! Thanks for sharing that to me. Super cool. Actually planting corals has been on my mind a lot, long story for a comment, but it is something I might get into once I am back home.

  5. Interresting read Ashley,
    Hawthorn is not very known to me , thanks for the lovely pictures.
    I love that the energy is stirring and we all feel more alive too. May is a wonderful months. Enjoy May!

    1. Dear Ute, I hope you will find a Hawthorn near you. Often they can be found in hedgerows even in towns. Happy May. 🌹🙋‍♂️

    1. Andrea, it is good to hear from you. Your posts have been missed although I see one has just arrived in my inbox. I look forward to reading it. Happy Beltane. 🌹🙋‍♂️

  6. Happiest Beltain ever, my friend! I felt the quickening in your lovely verse as I read. And I can see the potential in the plants of your photos. We are one in our love for Spring & the Earth in general, Ashley. 🌞

    1. Thank you, Lisa, and it’s lovely to see you back on your own blog. 🤗🌹🙋‍♂️
      PS. I found a TM teacher here. I’ll keep you posted. 💌

  7. Hi Ashley, I am a little late to this post! Thanks for sharing the link to David’s West to East calendar. I like seeing the similarities and the differences between them. I hope all is well!

    1. Thanks, Mark, I’ve been following David’s blog for a few years but I’ve still so much to learn. All is well here, hoping the same with you. 🙋‍♂️

  8. Thank you, Ashley, for such a wonderful post on mother earth in spring season. Loved your haiku and green pictures! Hawthorn by the way reminded me of Hawthorne experiment to assess the interpersonal skills. Best wishes for Beltain!🙏💐

    1. Thank you, Kaushal, for your visit and interesting comments. I think we need to extend participation to a global scale where everyone is involved in humanity’s future! 🙏

      1. So true, Ashley, that’s the need of the hour. You’re so welcome 🙏💐

  9. A very interesting text, as well as some very nice photos. All this allows us to understand your love for nature. Thank you Ashley. I am not skilled with plants, except with my friends the orchids. My sister says I have a “good hand” with them. Have a good weekend. Un abrazo 🍷

    1. Thank you for your visit to my blog, Sabius, and your comments. Here we say that a person has ‘green fingers’ if they achieve good results in the garden. I don’t have ‘green fingers’ just red ones from scraping out the weeds! 🤣 Have a great weekend too! 🍷🙋‍♂️

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