by Hunter MacKenzie
We sleep three hours,
a regimen made for mania,
all night on the streets,
walking and walking
and talking to strangers.
Hopes raised and dashed,
each one with the possibility
We leave notes
in the car park,
queries to the universe,
under the open sky,
the dark but wide-open sky,
teeming with signals
Occasionally we receive
a cryptic response,
enough to keep us
We pace past the coffee shop,
past the shuriken boys
with spiked hair and trenchcoats,
past the old theater with
and concrete gods
watching over the entrance.
We watch for signs.
Everything is significant
except that which is
We burn candles and bury them
tied in red cloth,
exactly three hundred and thirty-three paces
from the derelict fountain,
near the railroad,
during a lunar eclipse.
Three threes make nine.
Three threes are the number of chaos.
We hope that the freight train derailment
three nights later
It may be metaphorical –
a possible indication of
the condition of my brain –
but I won’t believe it until
three years later.
For now it’s only
another suggestion of
delays and dashed hopes.
Later in time,
when the threes and nines
have loosened their hold,
and I have no streets to walk
and I can see no stars to consult
and I have given up the search
because I no longer know
what I’m hunting,
and hope has run out before time,
I will still be restless,
still be awakened
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This Week at Gatewood: June 21-27, 2015
Artwork via Pixabay.
by Frasier MacKenzie
Hello, and thanks for stopping in! We’ve changed our background this week to something a bit lighter, and increased the font size a tiny bit more. Small changes, but I think it makes things a bit easier on the eyes – and that’s important to us, since the latest numbers indicate that many of our visitors stay here reading for an hour or more. Let us know what you think by emailing us at info(at)gatewoodjournal.org or tweeting to @docnicholas.
Here are our features for the week of June 21-28:
Tuesday: “The Photographs of Photographers,” poetry by F.X. MacKenzie
Wednesday: “Intro & Preparatory Notes for The Tarot Compendium” from D.V. Gray, Hunter MacKenzie, and “Queen Z”
Remember, the Friday photo can be downloaded for free as a meditation card for your phone, tablet or computer. Share, print, ponder… enjoy!
Here’s a bit of humor from our Special Assistant Dr Nicholas:
Be sure to follow @docnicholas on Twitter for daily updates on Journal posts as well as book love, animal humor & rescues, and other items of interest.
That’s it for the Gatewood Weekend Wrap-Up for the week of June 21-27. Enjoy your weekend, and visit us again soon!
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Intro & Preparatory Notes for The Tarot Compendium
Photo via Morguefile.
by D.V. Gray, Hunter MacKenzie, and “Queen Z”
Our Tarot Compendium now has its own page here:
Below are some notes and recommendations for best utilizing the Compendium and the Tarot in general.
Although there are some general meanings which tend to hold true for divination with the Tarot, it is highly individualized and needs a great deal of work, study, observation and interpretation on the part of the reader. The more experience you gain, the more accurate your insights will be. The meanings suggested here are intended to give some basis from which to start – not to be a comprehensive or dogmatic list of rules. It is to be expected that as one gains experience in reading the cards, one will expand upon the suggested interpretations, developing a deeper and more individual sense of meaning from each card.
Some suggest that reading more than two or three times a week is excessive, but we have not found this to necessarily be the case. For matters in which you wish to assess probabilities, it is essential that you learn what sort of time frame the cards tend to form for you. To this end, reading once a day (or every other day) at approximately the same time each day may prove useful. Once the habit has been established, insight and understanding becomes far more fluent than it tends to be in a situation where the cards are read haphazardly or only on occasions where the querist feels in desperate need of “answers.”
As far as layout, several have become common in general usage, and it cannot really be said that one is inherently better than another. The Celtic Cross tends to give just about the right amount of information, in our opinion, and makes establishing the time frame of events relatively simple. (Note: we do not use the method described in the booklet accompanying the Waite deck, where the querist chooses a “significator” card. If that method resonates with you and works for you, however, then by all means use it.) Other layouts may provide a more “condensed” view if information is needed quickly or if a narrower focus is desirable, while some layouts on the opposite extreme tend to yield a great deal of information based on the relationships of the cards to one another in the layout. It is not necessary to be familiar with all layouts to be proficient; it is more important to master a layout that gives you the right amount of information – then if you find it necessary to expand or narrow it, you may wish to explore other layouts.
Regarding reversals (upside-down cards) – there are various opinions on whether this should be incorporated or not, but we feel that the cards yield much more detail and intricacy in the interpretation if reversals are allowed.
Regarding gender – many sources contend that the “court cards” (Page, Knight, Queen and King) will always represent persons of certain genders (i.e., Queens will always represent an older woman, Knights will stand for a young man, etc.). This depends mainly on one’s own orientation and beliefs about the matter. We tend to get more accurate insights from the cards when the court cards are not assigned one gender – but again, this is a matter for individual interpretation, and your own experience is the best guide to how you should interpret these for yourself.
It is recommended that you keep your cards in a safe place, out of general view, and that you not let others handle them indiscriminately. The more “bonded” they become to you, the more accurate the insights will be for your life. With a new deck, it is not a bad idea to sleep with them under your pillow for some nights at first (although this may be more psychological than anything else).
It is advisable to bear in mind that events are probabilities and are not “set in stone.” The very act of looking ahead to gauge the possibilities available to you changes the range of those probabilities and the likelihood of what will happen. Therefore, it is a good idea to phrase your questions in a way such as, “What is likely to be the result if I…?” or “I would like insight into…” rather than expecting the cards to display a specific outline of future events. It is not uncommon for the process of reading to function as a tool to extend awareness and clarify what you already know but aren’t aware that you know.
Divination by the Tarot is a practice based largely on interpretation. While the cards themselves may have designated rudimentary meanings, what you get from your reading is necessarily highly personal and subjective. The better you know yourself and the further reaches of your own mind, the more accurate your readings are likely to be.
© Copyright 1993 by D.V. Gray, Queen Z & Hunter MacKenzie. Updated and republished 2005, 2006, 2007, 2011, 2013, 2015
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The Photographs of Photographers
by F.X. MacKenzie
The photographs of photographers are
scowls or blank looks,
raccoons in headlights –
post-office portraits even when we “look nice.”
There is a reason we like to stay
on the other end of that
clinical, cynical, unblinking lens,
that mirror for monkeys
(frank as harsh noonlight,
unflattering as an ex-wife).
We squirm, tortured on the hooks of
Historians should have no historical significance.
We protest, arms flung up like
crucifixes to ward off the evil lens-eye.
We who capture the souls of natives
and the blur of butterfly wings
live in mortal fear of being pinned down
to the drying board of
1/125th second’s humanity:
one immortal exhibit of evidence that we
did anything more than
© Copyright 2003 by F.X. MacKenzie. Republished 2004, 2011, 2015.
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