I tied myself to a river so that I could make music. Music is my favorite art. I tore my flesh and flung open my arms. My ribs became a harp, my lungs two flutes. The river laughed. Each day I would be visited by my daemon, a bald creature with wings and a serpent’s body. She also knew what I was doing, and that my work was important—I was not to be disturbed, I told her—but she was often lonely, and this world is very frightful if you are alone. That’s why I tied myself to the river in the first place, so that I might be filled with song, since the world is so awful. Yes, I divined after all the suffering of my lifetime that the solution should be music. The message came from Neptune. I needed to go to the river, devote myself to it, and I would be saved. But… now that I have done so, Neptune seems to have forgotten me. He never visits. I never feel his glittering tail. Not even a hair off his body floats down the river to meet me. Where is he? Where is Poseidon, who advised river marriage and music? And if he is gone, why am I still tied to this fast deep water?
Today is a special day. They say the veil between this world and the next is thinnest, and as such, we have more luck passing through to contact the spirit realm. Messages from ancestors or guides can be divined maybe with a little more clarity. It is a day to honor those who have passed on from the material realm, and to give thanks to the spirits that guide and protect us in our daily life.
In this spread, I see the end of a cycle and a subsequent new beginning. Today is also considered the witchy “New Year,” the day where the old cycle dies and a new one is born. It is Scorpio season, after all. From the ashes of the pyre soon comes the red-plumed phoenix, born again from her own self-immolation, a death induced by fire.
The Queen of Wands is a fire queen. She sits on her throne, receptive, warm, empowered. Sunflower in hand, she evokes the Sun, and the black cat at her feet evokes lunar power. With her lap full of flower, there is a feeling of abundance here. The queen is in control of her creative power, and as such she is a font of pure life.
But! Energy is always moving, being pushed along by the Wheel of Fortune. When we reach the apex of one cycle, when we reach our queendom, we much push through the veil, shown here in the Seeker card, and begin again. In the Pagan Otherworlds tarot, the Seeker talks about beginning a new story or cycle. With the wisdom one has gained by living the past cycle to its fullest extent, she is now able to cross from one realm to the next, and begin again.
When we start fresh, we can really only begin at the beginning, and this is evoked by the presence of the Page of Wands. You can see that the Page holds their want forward, toward the future, whereas the Queen held her wand backwards, toward the past.
The Page of Wands signals a message, a messenger, or a call to a new rush of energy around our projects, dreams, and goals for the future. We are starting again from the position of beginner. To me this was so potent. It seemed like a call to take the power one might have collected as the Queen of Wands manifestation of self, and to retain that, use it as sustenance. Then, while draped in the simple cloak of the Seeker (note that he, too, carries a staff/wand), cross over into the next realm of our life that we are being called to. We start fresh as a Page with much to learn. There is beauty here. It is a reminder that there is power in starting again, and a reminder to be wise enough to trust that fresh start, even if you’re starting from square one.
Moon in Leo
lunar honey, the moon now
stung golden, pressed fiercely
in a coverlet mane
of sungold. strike forth
from between ribs,
the heart in its cavern
bursts luminous forth
and from jealousy foams.
law bent to charisma,
pride struck competitor,
the moonlion in water pierced
with sun pierced ego—