How exciting! I love decks of cards, and Heather Roan Robbins has just produced a beautiful deck that uses astrology and archetype to create a tool for intuition and self-reflection. The artwork, by Lucas Lua de Souza has a dreamy magical feeling, often with the effect of spheres within spheres or meaning within meaning. For me, the best way to get to know a deck is to pull a card a day and meditate on it. I pulled “Vesta” for the goddess of the hearth–a flame within a small neoclassical temple, vibrant clouds behind. The meaning is the perfect message for me right now as I do the laundry in my suitcase from a trip, turn on the heaters, and put the garden to bed. “Vesta calls to you to be a hearth fire, to share yourself for the benefit of all but still have enough energy to live healthfully and give again another day.”
I also thought I’d ask the deck: any advice for the readers of Miriam’s Well blog?
“Stop the normal patterns of your life and take a break.” “It’s not a time, tempting though it may be, to reminisce, pick at old scars, or revisit a painful situation from your past.” “This is a moment out of the ordinary flow, an opportunity to use what you’ve worked so hard to learn.”
I’m experiencing a kind of renaissance in terms of my relationship to tarot cards. I started reading them my last year in high school. In San Francisco in the 1980’s I reviewed the feminist decks that were emerging for various publications. That is when I acquired the round Motherpeace deck. Since then, it is really the only deck I use to read, and I know it well. I still use my original copy!
But pandemic lockdown has brought so much learning opportunity on zoom–and I couldn’t resist a course on tarot cards called Death and Resurrection as Muse, via Morbid Anatomy. It’s been useful, with an emphasis on European art history and iconography. As if by coincidence, I also visited Santa Fe artists Alexandra Eldridge in her studio to buy a tarot card print as a gift. Her complete deck should be available this year–I can’t wait! (http://alexandraeldridge.com/product-category/prints/tarot-prints/)
Now of course I’m discovering and buying new decks. All this is because I’m writing a poetry sequence based on the Major Arcana. After I did the planets in my poetry collection STAR GAZING (Cholla Needs, 2020) I felt the urge to work more with the interplay between archetypes’ traditional meaning and my own understanding. It is coming along nicely–the course helped fill in connections to cards I don’t always relate to.
But I’ve always loved Zero, The Fool. Here is the poem:
the baby is naked
she has the hose
and foolishly I shriek
“don’t get me wet!”
egging her on
her blond tousled hair
bangs in her eyes
she can say “ant” and “please”
but what is she really
so too the neighbor’s bees
cast runes in the book of the day
I’ve cultivated for
in the ruined city
there is honey
beneath the masonry
(still standing in the desert)
how close, in autumn,