Queer Tarot is important, because it is a lovely thing to see reflection in art, in media, in realisation of human, form behaviour and relations as something that is closer than the narrative that is being commonly told out there. Queerness in Tarot is important as a reminder that this world isn’t fixed, that this world is fluid, that I am a fluid being. There is a fluidity to it, to the human soul to the human spirit. For myself, for other queers, the “others”, it’s important to have a thing that resonates back, that resolves their identity and doesn’t try to wash it away or hide it under a thing, or say “this narrative is secondary”. That it is just as valid as what you would see in a magazine, a news paper or in a movie – or in a traditional Tarot deck. When you’re getting that read to you, it’s lovely to have something that feels more authentic to an experience that queerness.
I chose the Host of Swords, which to me is the leveller, the bringer of things together, the connector. It’s an offering not a judgement or a wielding. It’s a bountiful harvest, a pouring forth. It opens up a table, allows people to sit down and feel welcome, to feel loved to feel nourished. That they have a space to feel safe welcomed and part of a family.
The Host of Swords is fair, I am the lord of Air. I was drawn to the Host of Swords, because every time I get a reading the King of Swords will come up, and I am very much aligned with air. I feel like air is my realm. If I had a kingdom, Air would be my kingdom. The thing with the swords that I could never quite resolve is it’s punishing side. The side that wields and slices. That decides, and makes cutting action and cutting decisions. The Host of Swords, lays that sword down and instead has that table, that space, that kingdom for those that are “other’d”. For the Queer, for the witch, for the trickster, for the kindred of the forrest, to come and have plenty. To have the food, the laughter the connection, the space. The Host of Swords, spreads the butter, and cuts the bread.
I would tell my younger self, that he will grow into the thing he is destined to become anyway. Don’t feel like you have to behave the way people are asking you to behave. Don’t feel like you have to wield that sword like it is a thing of destruction, that symbol is creation, and you can hold it beautifully. You can grow into yourself beautifully. You can shed the masculine that demands you to be stronger than emotion, and wrapped up in steel. In an inability, to love, grow and be fierce. Be you- now! Don’t wait for permission.
If someone pulled the Host of Swords in a tarot reading I would want them to know that having a male body in this world is gentle, it is an offering of more than self. It is a kindness, a gentleness, it is beautiful. You can romanticise yourself. You can be strong and beautiful.
* Transcription from Audio Interview
A huge thank you to Luke for creating this with me at Cloud Catcher witch camp. You touched me, your story touched me, and my eyes are damp after typing this up. I’m honoured to share your words here and your take here on a beautifully fierce Queer version of the King of Swords.