Fortune's Lover: A Book of Tarot Poems
Fortune's Lover: A Book of Tarot Poems is a small 42-page book that uses poetry to express the energy of tarot. The poems use the major arcana cards for inspiration.
By Rachel Pollack
Book - Published by A Midsummer Night's Press
Review by Bonnie Cehovet
I have long admired the work of Rachel Pollack (“78 Degrees of Wisdom”, “The Body of the Goddess”, “Tarot of Perfection” and “The Shining Tribe Tarot”, amongst others). It is thoughtful, allows any boundaries there are to form themselves, and encourages participation and growth. I also want to add kudos to the publisher, for recognizing the wisdom in this small (42 page) book, and being willing to offer it to the world.
The use of poetry to express the energy of the Tarot goes back to the Renaissance, and is a very unique, and personal, way of expressing how the cards work. Fortune’s Lover is not meant to act as a study guide for the archetypes – it works with the Tarot, using cards from the Major Arcana as a place to begin each poem, which then spirals out into whatever it was meant to be.
The Fool speaks of a study group – the type of study group that we have all attended from time to time. What it morphs into is a lady sprinting across five busy lanes of New York traffic to catch her Fool’s Chariot, the Chariot that will take her on a quiet ride to the Emperor’s train.
The Magician contains excerpts from the “Emerald Tablet of Hermes”, while the High Priestess becomes the epitome of Silence. The Emperor is seen through his daughter’s eyes, while she learns the lesson of never looking to any man for protection. The Wheel of Fortune in part speaks of those who read the cards as being Fortune’s Lovers. The Hanged Man becomes a story of Merlin (after The Merlin Tarot, by R.J. Stewart), while the World speaks of YIHUD (Hebrew for Union).
At the end of the book is a poem entitled Tarot PI, which was formed by translating the numbers 0-9 into words related to the first ten cards of the Major Arcana. The words were then substituted for their numbers in the first hundred digits of the irrational number known as Pi.
The final poem is entitled Fool:
“The wise man hears of the Gate and studies the lock every day. The devotee hears of the Gate and tries to squeeze between the bars. The fool hears of the Gate And laughs. Without laughter the Gate would never open.”
This is a wonderful book that will expand your mind – whether that is your intent or not!
© Bonnie Cehovet
Bonnie Cehovet is Certified Tarot Grand Master, a professional Tarot reader with over ten years experience, a Reiki Master/Teacher and a writer. Bonnie has served in various capacities with the American Tarot Association, is co-founder of the World Tarot Network, and Vice President (as well as Director of Certification) for the American Board For Tarot Certification. She has had articles appear in the 2004 and 2005 Llewellyn Tarot Reader.