‘Hip hip hip hooray! The finest month, the month of May will take your sorrows and spear your woes – will worry all nations and weaken your foes.’ Anon
It is the first of May … “White Rabbits!” It is time for Maypoles to be hoisted, adorned with beautiful ribbons … “let’s dance around the Maypole.”
We had a special song that we sung at school to celebrate May and although we skipped and tripped around the hard wooden floor of the Dining Hall there sadly wasn’t a Maypole in sight. Here is the song that we sung …
“Come lasses and lads take leave of your dads and away to the Maypole high – For every fair has a sweetheart there and the fiddler’s standing by – For Willy shall dance with Jane and Johnny has got his Joan – To trip it, trip it, tri-ip it, trip it, tri-ip it up and down - To trip it, trip it, tri-ip it, trip it, tri-ip it up and down.”
The most favourite saying for May is:
“Don’t cast a clout ‘til May is out.”
Years ago I always assumed that this meant that you shouldn’t dress in Summer clothes until the month of May had ended and June had begun. I think though it is probably a fair assumption that it means … keep on your Winter clothes until the hawthorn blossom (the May blossom) opens its flowers!