Solstice Observance


Little does he know

Hawkedon
21 June 2014

Morris has no proven Pagan origins.
Nevertheless, in the traditions of Little Egypt some rituals have to be observed. The Summer Solstice is one such, without which the fabric of Suffolk life would rapidly unravel.


As Squire pointed out to the huge Saturday evening crowd, by an amazing coincidence the time for sunset on 21 June 2014 was 21.21.
How the audience gasped when this was announced!

We had two and a half sides joining us for our Summer Solstice celebrations at the Queen's Head, Hawkedon:
Bury Fair and Westrefelda, each complete,
plus a part of Green Dragon.

 
A mixed mob of musos  Ready for the dance 

The dancing started at 8pm, highlighting Little Egypt's new 2014 programme by opening with Ring O' Bells.

 
Stand well back, this could turn nasty  While the band played on 

We managed three dances a side before, at 9pm we all came together for a massed Jenny Lind.

 
We always pull a big crowd  Sir Jukes used to pull more than that 

 
Behave. This is a serious business 

Anticipation and tension were palpable as the time approached for the unveiling of the Straw Man.
Once again, Scott the landlord had managed to find us two virgins, essential for this part of the proceedings.
Squire welcomed them and explained their role in the ceremony.

 
I said it was 'anticipation' that was growing  Sorry, I was distracted 

He also passed on his thanks to Mr. Monk and Mr. Bangs who, it was claimed, had modelled the Straw Man's manhood on his own.

True or not, probably not, it was a magnificent sight to see as our virgins removed the Adnams apron.

How the audience gasped, again.

The two virgins turned shyly away while Westrefelda moved closer for a better look.

 
Is that all?  'Normal for Hawkedon - I've seen better in Wickhambrook' 

 
'Still, if it's all they've got' 

Squire told the audience that the straw man would be paraded amongst them, so cameras and smart phones were made ready to capture his final moments before meeting his doom on the bonfire.

 
This is the big one  If you say so 

It took some time to reach everyone and there was momentary concern that he might not reach the brazier at precisely 21.21 but with impeccable foresight and flexibility on Squire's behalf the match was light at exactly the right moment.

 
Off we go  Oh really, naked flames are not advisable 

As the flames started to lick higher the straw man formed a spooky silhouette and then he suddenly keeled backwards and was engulfed in the blaze.

 
Where's Edward Woodward when you need him? 

How the audience gasped!

 
Dancing with Britt Ekland, probably 
     
Page designed and maintained by Steve Clarke on behalf of the Morris Men of Little Egypt. - stephen.clarke06@btinternet.com - Steve Clarke 2014 - Photographs courtesy and Brian "Baggie" Stephens - 2014