Monday, January 20, 2014


TODAY'S CARD is THE KING OF SWORDS. (I've only four more cards to go and I'll finally have completed the deck, one of which is an additional Major I designed.) Here's the King of Swords in a block print deck, "The Light and Shadow Tarot" --

Here it is in a photographic deck, all pictures of my old home city back when I was still living there, "The New York Tarot" --

Then for some fantasy and color, here's the King of Swords in "The Celtic Dragon Tarot" --

And for COMPARISON, here's the King of Swords in the well-known Rider/Waite/Smith deck --

THE KING OF SWORDS: The New York Tarot King of Swords above really grabs me. This is actually nice for a change as this card tends to leave me cold -- which experience could in itself be a simple meaning for the King of Swords. When I lifted it from the deck I immediately thought that the man was saying "Where's the King of Swords? You wanna try the throne on for size?" Then I noticed that sword dangling in the air over the empty chair and I thought "Not me! No way!" And yet ... and yet ... every time I skewer myself or anyone else in my thinking I'm in that King's dark, precarious seat. Of course, there's much more to this King than that. Which is one of the reasons I've included The Celtic Dragon Tarot version above. Although a King he seems to be waiting on orders or approval from that dragon Queen (with her baby, at the bottom of the card). Or maybe he's paying his respects monarch to monarch, or petitioning for her support. In any case, there's a potent power here, sheathed for appropriate use if and when it's needed.

MEANINGS/INSIGHTS/READINGS FOR The King of Swords, SOME LESS COMMON OR EVEN QUIRKY -- Please note: The below is not intended to be an exhaustive exploration of this card; a quick google will produce a wider variety of takes should you not be familiar with it. (Given my heavy reliance on projection of my feelings and experiences onto the cards, I recognize that I may very well reveal more about myself here than I do about any particular card. However, this is exactly my point: I use the cards as a path to self-discovery and healing. I hope what I post here that comes out of that process will be useful in some way to other seekers.):

Self-destructive tendencies.

A dark, dangerous parent or care-taker.

Sitting in negative judgment of others and/or of one's self.

Someone who may have a chilling influence on the situation. This can be either helpful or hurtful, depending on how "hot" or "cold" things were to begin with.

Don't be bullied by this cutting display of intelligence. A truly smart person doesn't need to get defensive or be controlling of others.

Protect your time, space, and thoughts carefully right now. There may be some attempts on the part of others to undermine or control you in some way.

Time to be careful with how you express your thoughts. Your insights are more than usually sharp and to the point.

Drawing a line in the sand. Setting boundaries with someone else in a caring sensible way.

A male muse. The "Svengali" in a positive Svengali-like relationship.

A teacher who is as talented as his student but with more experience handling the emotions involved in developing one's art/talent/skills.

To break this mental trap get physical. You've reached the farthest limits of your understanding.

Don't let yours and anyone else's thinking on this issue cut you out. Your input is needed.

An incisive thinker and/or writer.

A break from the realms of thought will afford you a sense of renewal. Meditate, listen to music....

Legal issues; legal communications and processes.

And last, I'll close with what I've glimpsed in this card character on occasion: a capacity for many sorts of courage. E.g., the courage to step up in a new relationship, or to provide much needed leadership in an endeavor. If he were to sing it might be the song "Hero". But the King of Swords would probably be too focused on what he was thinking or doing to sing.

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'til next time, keep enjoying The Tarot, in whatever ways it comes to you in your life,

[aka: Patricia Kelly]
****If you wish to copy or use any of my writing, please email me for permission (under "View my complete profile")**** SEE ALSO: United Haiku and Tanka Society (UHTS) (charter member); Roswila's Dream & Poetry Realm for Tarot poetry; Roswila's Taiga Tarot for taiga (illustrated tanka); Trying to Hold A Box of Light for digital photos only.

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