31 Quotes and Poems About May: The Month of Merriment
The month of May, according to the Gregorian calendar, is named after Maia―the goddess of springtime and growth. Historically, the gentle warmth of the month caused flowers to blossom, crops to sprout, and people to dance. Children made garlands from greenery and participated in joyful celebrations on the first day of May.
These early may celebration traditions declined in popularity some two thousand years ago, but the spirit of may-time merriment remains to this day. Even as we grieve the loss of our heroes on Memorial Day, we find ways to celebrate the freedom that proves that their sacrifices were not in vain. Enjoy these 31 quotes—one for each day of May—that highlight the joy of this merry month.
About Mother's Day
1. "On the second Sunday of May, we honor those women who are our mothers. Whether we shower her with gifts, take her to a fancy dinner or make her a homemade card, what moms want most is to be surrounded by the love of their family." —American National Day Calendar
About Fun and Celebration
2. "Cinco de Mayo (May 5th) . . . is a time of song, dance, partying, and in general a time to be proud to be of Hispanic descent." ―Holiday Insights
3. "Now is the month of maying,
When merry lads are playing . . .
Each with his bonny lass
Upon the greeny grass.
Fa la la la la la la la la."
4. "I'm only wishing to go a-fishing;
For this the month of May was made."
―Henry Van Dyke
5. "We roamed the fields and river sides,
When we are young and gay;
We chased the bees and plucked the flowers,
In the merry, merry month of May."
6. "As it fell upon a day
In the merry month of May,
Sitting in a pleasant shade
Which a grove of myrtles made."
7. "I thought that spring must last forevermore; for I was young and loved, and it was May." —Vera Brittain
8. "It was the month of May, the month when . . . lovers, subject to the same force which reawakens the plants, feel their hearts open again, recall past trusts and past vows, and moments of tenderness, and yearn for a renewal of the magical awareness which is love." —Sir Thomas Malory
9. "Was in the merry month of May
When flowers were a bloomin'
Sweet William on his death-bed lay
For the love of Barbara Allen."
—Old English Ballad (one of several versions)
10. "O, the month of May, the merry month of May,
So frolic, so gay, and so green, so green, so green!
O, and then did I unto my true love say,
. . . thou shalt be my Summer's Queen."
11. "He wrote her name in the sand
Never even let go of her hand
Somehow they stayed that way
For those five days in May."
—James Cuddy and Greg Keelor
About Birds and Flowers
12. "The month of May is the pleasant time; its face is beautiful; the blackbird sings his full song, the living wood is his holding, the cuckoos are singing and ever singing; there is a welcome before the brightness of the summer." ―Lady Gregory
13. "When April steps aside for May, like diamonds all the rain-drops glisten; fresh violets open every day; to some new bird each hour we listen." ―Lucy Larcom
14. "When purple finches sing and soar . . .
With vernal gladness running o'er—
When joys like these salute the sense . . .
Then waiting long hath recompense,
And all the world is glad with May."
15. "May: the lilacs are in bloom. Forget yourself." ―Marty Rubin
16. "At last came the golden month of the wild folk—honey-sweet May, when the birds come back, and the flowers come out, and the air is full of the sunrise scents and songs of the dawning year." ―Samuel Scoville Jr.
17. "And a bird overhead sang Follow,
And a bird to the right sang Here;
And the arch of the leaves was hollow,
And the meaning of May was clear."
―Algernon Charles Swinburne
18. "Queer things happen in the garden in May. Little faces forgotten appear, and plants thought to be dead suddenly wave a green hand to confound you." —W. E. Johns
19. "Horticulturally, the month of May is opening night, Homecoming, and Graduation Day all rolled into one." —Tam Mossman
More Insights About May
20. "It is now May . . . It is the month wherein Nature hath her fill of mirth, and the senses are filled with delights. I conclude, it is from the Heavens a grace, and to Earth a gladness." —Nicholas Breton
21. "And after winter folweth grene May." ―Geoffrey Chaucer
22. "May, more than any other month of the year, wants us to feel most alive." ―Fennel Hudson
23. "Make hay in May for you may never know what June is coming with and you may never know what July will present! When you see May, make hay!" ―Ernest Agyemang Yeboah
24. "As full of spirit as the month of May, and as gorgeous as the sun in Midsummer." —William Shakespeare
25. "Among the changing months, May stands confest the sweetest, and in fairest colors dressed." —James Thomson
26. "What potent blood hath modest May." —Ralph W. Emerson
27. "The world's favorite season is the spring. All things seem possible in May." —Edwin Way Teale
28. "Marry in the month of May,
And you'll surely rue the day . . .
Married when bees o'er May blossoms flit,
Strangers around your board will sit."
―New Zealand Proverb
29. "Let all thy joys be as the month of May,
And all thy days be as a marriage day."
30. "May . . . it’s full of all the things that make spring and the brighter part of the year so special. Flowers bud, the sun shines, and new seeds are sown into the fabric of our lives. May is awesome." ―Jenna Danchuk
About Memorial Day (Last Monday in May)
31. "May has decked the world, that we
May bring the brave on land or sea
Earth's glory on Memorial Day,
The lovely meadow gifts of May."
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© 2020 Dora Weithers