A Sibilla Madrigal

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Sibille del Originale 1890, Il Meneghello

I’ve been writing lately about a cartomantic deck I like a lot, the Italian Sibilla. Meanwhile, this month of April is National Poetry Month. So I had the bright idea of combining two loves, by sculpting a Sibilla reading into a poetic form. Continue reading

Eeyore and Tigger Read the Cards: The Statistics of Optimism

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Every Day Oracle (La Vera Sibilla): Malinconia and L’allegria (Lo Scarabeo); with A. A. Milne’s Eeyore and Tigger (E. H. Shepard, illustrator)

Have you ever caught yourself subconsciously picking which of your friends to confide in? When you’re bursting with exuberant feelings about that hot new date, you’re not rushing to Facetime your good buddy Eeyore. And when you have vague unsettling suspicions about how your boss is treating you, trying to get Tigger to stop bouncing and listen is a fruitless task.*

But there are times you want neither Eeyore nor Tigger’s one-dimensional world view. Because…tell me the truth! Is the world basically a happy place or a difficult one? Is the cup really more than half-full, or less than half-empty? Continue reading

The Daily Round

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La Vera Sibilla (Every Day Oracle), Lo Scarabeo

How to describe the Italian Sibilla cards?

It’s like going to your great-aunt’s house when you’re quite small, where the smells are old and the furniture ponderous. All is dusty and dim but for the brilliant light streaming in the kitchen window, spilling onto vivid purple African violets and red geraniums. Silence hangs heavy as brocade drapes, yet sometimes you think you hear laughter from another room. Your great-aunt is kindly, offering tidbits of unaccustomed food and conversation. She’s ancient, but sometimes unexpectedly, for an instant, her lissome, younger self bubbles forth. Continue reading

Who Are You, Monsieur Diable?

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The Devil’s in the details.

 Give the Devil his due.

A deliberate mistake in the weaving, so as not to tempt the Devil.

Speak of the devil–and he appears.

The devil you know is better than the one you don’t.

You handsome devil, you!

The Devil is not without a lot of cultural baggage, and not a nicely-matched luggage set either. Continue reading

Between Jost Amman and Me

Jost Amman cards

I’ve been practicing my cartomancy skills by reading images–as opposed to symbolic interpretations, or thoughts about what an “eight” REALLY MEANS (yes, I do think in capital letters). My teacher in this endeavor is the inimitable Camelia Read-the-Damn-Cards Elias–check her out here. Not only does this approach make card reading much simpler and more fun, but there is an obvious transference to the rest of my life. As in, what if I noticed my daily in-front-of-me experience, instead of the swirling clouds of thoughts about it all? Maybe if I saw things for what they are my whole life would be simpler. Continue reading

A Piteousness of Hanged Men

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If you are looking to read Tarot cards by actually seeing them, rather than by an overlay of imposed or associative meanings, you could find no finer card to practice on than the Hanged Man, Le Pendu. Continue reading