Tarot in Pandemic – 28 March 2020

Sustain me today, Tarot, with

     your Ace of Cups.

To raise me out of the murky depths,

   she sent me a dove,

                and a chalice.

She held me, as one does the wind,


Tarot in Pandemic – 01 April 2020

Wondrous Tarot, whisper me

    a card as the wind.

Her rustling quieted with the

            Wheel of Fortune.

With wings of angels came hope,

    drifting gently toward orb—

  This planet, or sun, or moon?

  This life spirit, or glowing ball, or

            ignis fatuus?

With wings of bull came strength,

    and force, and protection.

            Below, ever below,

                   yet above, always above,

   until the rustling quiets,

   until the whispering quiets,

Tarot in Pandemic – 17 April 2020

Cradle me, Tarot, in your cards.

     Soothe and lull.

  Palliate the paroxysmal pandemic.

She came, violent as

            the Devil.

Afflicting man and woman,

    the body and the mind—

    condemned to a present damnation.

The Devil is with us,

          and within us,

     and shaking us to our core . . .

          the paroxysms persist.

Tarot in Pandemic – 25 April 2020

As if, like the flashing glow

     of a lightning bug,

     O luminous Tarot,

       or like the glittering

     iridescence of the jewel beetle,

        allow me a glimpse of

            your cardsparkle.

Tarot obliged with the scintillation

            of the Lovers.

    She gave me the burning flicker

            of arborescent passion.

    She gave me lightning, she

            gave me lava in the

              seraph’s locks.

    She gave me incandescent glints

            in the serpent’s eyes.

    She gave me a speckle of


 a celestial glimpse of the universe.

Tarot in Pandemic – 28 April 2020

Three point one million flecks of

            heart dust,

       a transmutation of the body.

   Ashes, through purification by fire,

     descend, like souls falling from

                 the Tower,

         and return to the earth.

The ashes of three point one million—

    to fertilize the earth and bring

            new life;

    an alchemical reduction of the

            incorruptible body;

    the calcination of the physical into

            a pure, clear ash.

But what of the crown atop the tower?

        It has been said:

   “In the ash that remains

            at the bottom of the grave,

        there lies the King’s diadem.”*

*Quoted in Alexander Roob, Alchemy and Mysticism, p.180.

Tarot in Pandemic – 01 May 2020

I drip, dear Tarot, I’m a tear.

      Offer a card to dry me.

    Why the Moon?

            Why tears of moondrop

     provoking feral passions?

  Lunar cries from a somber

            Moon looking down

            fall upon a path.

     Does it lead to refuge

            in the distance: the

             high ground of the


    Or does it lead to a

         waterlogged fate


Joseph Ellison Brockway is a poet, translator, and Spanish professor. He likes to juxtapose words and signs to disrupt the language on the page and to disturb the reader’s thoughts. Many of his poems also experiment with ideas and images that explore the human psyche and existence. Joseph’s poetry has recently been published in L’Éphémère ReviewMoonchild MagazineSurVision Magazine, and Surreal Poetics. He can be found roaming the socialmediaverse at @JosephEBrockway

Photo by Saaede Doosbekheir