My Queen of the May
See “Spring Magic” blog entry below for performance details about “The Magic of Spring: An Earth Day Cabaret.”
How was the “Queen of the May” created?
In 2011 I was invited to perform a short program at a spring tea. One of the things I wanted to do was to sing about the May Pole tradition but I couldn’t find anything appropriate in the folk tradition, so I put on the thinking cap and came up with my own lyric, which I sang in the program to a “dummy tune.”
Later I met composer Louise Cloutier and it seemed to me she would be a good collaborator to bring the song into my repertoire. I’m quite pleased with the results: “Queen of the May” commemorates the rebirth of spring. I imagined an old fellow remembering a time when he was led in a May Pole dance by his lover who he remembers fondly as Queen of the May. Memories tend to gain power when recounted repeatedly over the years and so it is with this song. My own memories of creating this song are associated with an occasion when I sang it for my mother shortly before she passed.
I love to perform original material and now my lyric is embellished in a transporting, European-feeling setting, so appropriate for a May Pole dance which is historically of Germanic origin.
Thanks to Louise for her music and friendship. It will be a highlight of the program.