Nine of Swords
There is no grief like the grief that does not speak.
— Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The Nine of Swords is obviously a card of sorrow, and the anguish we sometimes feel in our dark hours alone. This card often speaks to our suffering on behalf of those we love, not just our own pain or fear.
Notice that the carving on the bed is of a conflict, where one figure is defeated, awaiting the final blow. On the blanket, we see roses – symbol of love and passion – interwoven with the signs of the zodiac, which points to the inclusion of others. This is also one of the few Tarot cards in which the cenral figure is of unclear gender – pointing to the universal nature of this situation.
Perhaps the person shown has had a terrible premonition in her or his dreams. Perhaps s/he feels regret, guilt or doubt concerning a loved one.
This is a time to pause and look deeply into the wells of grief you may have been closing your eyes to. That which you refuse to acknowledge in the light of day may appear to you in the cloak of night.
What fear or regret do you need to face? What troubling news may you have received? What insistently calls to you in your dreams, though you wish it would not? What wrong needs to be put right?
There is great love behind this disturbing image – and therefore, there is hope. For while this is not the cheeriest card in the Tarot, it speaks to the deepest and loneliest places in the human heart.
Be honest with yourself. While, in the light of day, we can wear our game face and deny the things that trouble us, our dreams in the night are not fooled. Conversely, remember that sometimes, our darkest fears and worries may well dissolve in the light of day, for as it is told in the old faery tale of Vasilisa and the Baba Yaga, “the morning is cleverer than the evening.”
This week, examine your situation carefully, be open to messages from Shadow, and take your time before you make the choices that lie before you. Allow the dawning to come, for that could make all the difference.