Saturday, June 20, 2015

High Summer

High summer holds the earth. 
Hearts all whole.
Sure on this shining night I weep for wonder wand'ring far
Of shadows on the stars.
     --James Agee, Sure On This Shining Night

It was warm today, warm, not hot. I got up early, not meaning to, but the sunlight would not let me sleep further. I had some plans for the day, a couple of readings and a rare trip shopping. Before then, however, I had to verify some software changes really worked.

It was too early for the software changes. My part of the working weekend was small and I was glad for that. As soon as they called me, I could make sure they worked, make sure the data looked good, make sure the changes didn’t break something else.

I checked up on Alice, a little close inspection just to be sure she was doing better. She is doing much better and seems better than she has in a long time. I think now that the antibiotics she took for her kitty-cat pancreatitis had an overall “sunshine” effect of clearing up just about anything that was ailing her. Further, I think she may have had some kind of low-grade infection for a while. I posted something funny on Facebook because people had been asking how she was doing, imagining that she, like some famous-for-being-famous-for-five-minutes person in too deep and too much in the public eye, woke up from anesthesia certain that she was drugged and given a Brazilian wax. Horrors by light of day!

The Sun in the Tarot is sometimes thought to be good no matter what. Even reversed, for those who read with reversals, the Sun’s positive light shines through just about everything. There’s no dark side of the Sun. Or is there?

The Sun is not welcomed by everyone. One of my classmates in high school had a skin condition that gave her an allergic hives-like reaction when exposed to the sun. That was a tough problem to manage in New Mexico, where sunlight was obscured more often by dust storms than rain storms. If the Sun came up in a reading for her, would it be good? Would it mean hide? Cover up? Set her life by the opposite of most of society and become safely nocturnal?

The Sun is good news and bad news for amateur photographers too. When the Sun is high in the sky, the breath-taking views of the Grand Canyon from the South Rim are washed out glare, dust and rocks and a reminder to stay at least your own height in distance from the edge of the cliff. White clouds sail across a light blue sky with little definition. It is hot in the summer there. There are stories of the numbers of people who go over the edge. The dry trees, some dead, some alive gnarl towards the edge of the irregular canyon, and provide one of my favorite experiences, the smell of pinon pine sap.

As the Sun falls low in the sky toward the end of the day, no longer glaring down on all it rules, the canyon’s colors come alive in reds, purples, oranges, blues and yellows with a last hurrah of the coraling curtains of clouds before it rests, and lets all others rest, for another cooling evening. Colors and creatures come out then. Do they flee the Sun, the Sun that brings life and cooks it to dust and ashes?

That evening at the Grand Canyon, the angle of light at Monterey Bay, California, the brilliant sunsets in New Mexico are all made possible by the Sun, the Sun in the right position.

The Sun can expose the truth, bring realization. It can also dazzle and blind, create mirages in the desert or a lonely stretch of blacktop road. It can warm; it can burn. A happy day can turn into a sleepless night of pain.

Is the Sun always good?

A reading like this, the 10 of Swords, The Sun, the 9 of Swords seldom makes a “sunny” message. A betrayal has come to light and is exposed, known, perhaps known to all, and the realization that all illusions are gone, dreams are over and nothing but the real world faces the person betrayed. It’s hard to call this a positive reading. The shadows on the Sun may be the darkest of all.

In a larger sense, though, while a betrayal never feels good, perhaps it may be best to know, to know for certain finally and to wake to a new day even in sorrow so that the Soul may progress on its journey. It may seem like the longest day, but we and the Sun rest and begin again tomorrow.

Happy Summer Solstice!

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