Poetry and Tarot Transmission for the Week Starting June 3rd

Each week I do a live broadcast on Facebook based on a custom built cut-up poem and two tarot cards. This is the condensed notes from the week’s transmission for the week beginning Monday 3rd June. The original poem is from download this week – please feel free to share widely (poem details at the end).

The poem began with a fragment cut from Thich Nhat Hanh’s Being Peace. The text that followed didn’t feel big enough to incorporate all that wanted to come through – especially as Helen Butler and I had been talking to and exploring this very theme less than an hour earlier. Last week I found myself also writing to this theme as part of my work at The JAR Collective.

The poem acknowledges all the different versions of self we walk the world in/as according to who we interact with, the expectations of those we interact with and our desire to be accepted and included. All, some or none of these can reflect who we truly identify as ‘Me’. It could be that once we knew exactly who we were but over time this was eroded. Or we might have changed dramatically who we are compared with who we used to be. But there is very often a core thread, cord or fire that burns deep down and across time (or times).

I feel as though the space between myself and what I do is rapidly closing and I can see a time when there is just Me. The deeply insightful Helen shared the metaphor of self as a precious jewel with multiple facets cut and polished over time. I love this, as it speaks to wholeness as a constant (a default if you want) and different aspects of that whole hold or reflect the light as need be.


The suit of swords is the suit of air – of beliefs, thinking, mental patterns, stories and brain chemistry. Not surprising given the Gemini energy at the moment and pending a Gemini full moon.

I consider the Queen of Swords to be the bad-bitch of the tarot Queens and I adore her. She takes no shit, sees things clearly, speaks her truth, is fierce about her boundaries and holds space for herself like no other.

Paired with the poem she is an invitation to dive deep into yourself for the Truth of Who You Are and the truth of Who You Want to Be… how you want to show up in the world.

She has the capacity to hold a big space – to be a bigger container than you think she’s capable of (we have a capacity to play small with ourselves even in these deeply intimate and private places within). Open the space within and sit with yourself, in non-judgement, in radical neutrality and slowly go through what you find. Allow it to be gentle and illuminating, the Queen has much she wants you to know about yourself. This can be done in meditation or journaling. It can be done through cards or simply by asking for signs via the radio or a random play list. Go where she takes you. You can trust this energy will no lead you astray, not take the circuitous route to where she’s going.

This week also feels like a wonderful one to also do past life healing, or soul retrieval work. The Queen’s butterflies represent the energetic cords and threads which bind us to other lives, and other selves, which we have the capacity to reconnect with, heal and release, or heal and integrate with.


The Knight is the fastest moving of all the energies in the tarot. This says – if you call these lost parts in, if you ask for questions on how you can be truer to yourself and to stand brighter, fiercer and taller in your truth, be prepared for an answer or insight, and for it to arrive post haste. Also be prepared for what happens next, because this is not energy that wants to stop around for tea and biscuits and long chats. Change whistles along in the Knight’s wake.

It’s important to know, the Knight also moves out into the world armoured with belief in himself and his truth. This can mean he rubs people up the wrong way – either in false beliefs of self, or in ungraceful use of honesty. The flip side of this is, with inner work, self awareness and alignment, he moves into the world emboldened by his self belief and comfortable in his truth, without needing to be right, to be accepted by people who don’t really care about him or bend himself to make others feel okay. When the Knight and the Queen sit in their truth they by virtue of presence invite others to also sit in their truth.

  • What one thing could you do this week to step unapologetically into your truth. To move closer to be a Whole of You self, rather than a fragmented, diluted or discordant Self.
  • A simple intention expressed this week to know yourself better is  simple, deep and powerful – especially paired with the Gemini new moon energy.
  • And where do you see the aspects of Self slowly coming together. What holds those aspects together in harmony and congruence? What magnetising them. Amplifies them.
  • Where do you argue with people based on ‘truth’ and the need to be right? Does this move you closer into alignment with your Higher Self or further away. Or who in your midst does this? How does this make you feel? Is this a dynamic you need to be part of?

Have a wonderful week of intrepid exploration or gentle knowing and I’ll see you next week. Please feel free to download and share the poem.

Source Text: Being Peace by Thich Nhat Hanh
Poem : Jodi Cleghorn of Soul Lyrical (with extension by Jodi Cleghorn)
Artwork: Adam Guan via Brush Dance calendars

The Facebook Live transmission is available here. This written pieces serves as an adjunct and extension of this.

Poetry and Tarot Transmission for the Week Beginning 20th May

A little background. While I always call on insight for the collective, this week’s reading initially felt tailored to the experience of my most immediate collective – of the reactions and responses to the results of our federal election here in Australia – but when I consider broader outrage and disbelief at the intrusion of more and more aggressive conservatism and radical dismantling of rights, then the results of our Federal Election are sadly reflective of the movement of the shadow across the globe.


The tower speaks to sudden and unexpected turns of events. It speaks to a lightning bolt hit to our authenticity, blowing away what does not align in powerful and often dramatic or violent ways. It is not the expected evolution of change as seen in the Death card. This is ground zero. And almost always comes literally ‘as a bolt from the blue’.


In contrast, the 4 of swords is an acknowledgement of all that’s gone on and a need for down time. It is an invitation to rest. To recharge. To restore. It is the bodily pause demanded after a massive adrenalin surge. The exhaustion which comes after which we can ignore (to our detriment) and push through, or honour with slow gentleness – in however we feel best serves us.

This always felt like a two part message which the tarot cards confirmed when I pulled them.

part one
It began as a gentler message of know your truth, of taking off masks and costumes and the other things which clothe and protection us from the shock and unexpectedness of ‘naked truth’ – or clear seeing:

  • Who am I, in relation to my truth.
  • Who have I become in the disconnection from my truth?

The Tower card threw extra amplitude into it – as in not just a gentle walk down memory lane with truth, but how truth has the capacity to be both the fire in the belly of our inner warriors but also a protection, of holding firm because you have your truth at your back, regardless of what anyone else says or does.

If you’re not sure about your truth – knowing your core values is a good place to start. We do not intrinsically know our core values but we do instinctively recognise them in a list.

It is also an invitation to view the truth of others from a place of detachment, to not allow intolerance and judgement to become the energies du jour because it is easy to fall into separation and blame-shaming – especially when we are shocked and hurt.

Charged is such an interesting word to see in a poem.

  • Charged as in ‘dished the responsibility’ to remember
  • Charged as in ‘charged up’ – fuelled – at full working capacity to remember
  • Charged as in you’ve just been hit by a bolt of lightning…’wake the fuck up’. If you don’t know what your truth is, it’s time to know. No more fence sitting. No more ambivalence.

Then there is ‘simply’: How does your truth sit with the way you arrive as an individual within the collective?

It is also a reminder that it is meant to be an ecstatic dance between truth and individuation. This is not everyone’s experience and it is not everyone’s safe place now and we are possibly entering into a period where it is going to be less and less safe for us to openly be our individuated selves. For those of us who can hold a space for this enlivened change may we remember to also hold a place for those who are denied this space.

part two
The second part of calls for persistence (and yes, that word is in bold) in spiritual nourishment and self care. It is a daily commitment that, especially during the intensity of these times, is a non-negotiable part of our daily lives. There are very real phenomena called empathy burnout and compassion fatigue. If you feel as though you are running at a brick wall over and over again, and you’re not taking the time to care for yourself, it will eventually destroy you.

Right now – take time out in a way that best support you: take a week of social media, take a break from mainstream news, opt out of interactions with toxic people or situations. And choose something kind for yourself instead.

The poem also speaks to a gentler reminder that sometimes we fall out of alignment with our soul and self care practices. Or has life got in the way of things you once did. Is it time to make space, time and energy for them again. Habitual attendance can become just that, habitual attendance without the deeper connection and support that these practises, routines or rituals once held for us.

  • Do you still deeply love what you do?
  • Do you feel excited about engaging in it?
  • Does it reliably help elevate or ground you?
  • Is it simple, easy and fit with the time you have on hand?
  • Is there something you’ve always wanted to try?

The Soul Lyrical Weekly Song #3

Each week I do a live broadcast on Facebook based on a custom built cut-up poem and two tarot cards. This is the condensed notes from the week’s transmission for the week beginning Monday 29th April. The original poem is available for purchase here for $15 including postage.


Illustration: I’m Nobody, Jeanie Tomanek via Womanhood Magazine | Words: Written on the Body, Jeanette Winterson

We have well-established practices and habits for locking away our pain, our trauma and our wounding. We rationalise and logic it away. We decide we don’t have time to deal with it. Or the resources or skills to do so. We don’t have the people around us who would understand or who might be able to help us. Or we just outright try to forget.

And then there comes a time when we can no longer ignore the lack of ease within because it manifest outwards and demands our attention. It is no accident that disease is also dis-ease; our body’s way of communicating that something is not right.

The poem suggests a grab for the throat. In this case, we get throat infections we can’t seem to shake or lose our voices. Or there’s a construction in our throat or a perpetual dry itch. We have bouts of breathlessness or feel as though we can’t breath. As though we are suffocating. In this case, the time may have come to speak out; to refuse to be silenced any more.

It may manifest elsewhere in your body. The areas of my body ruled by the third and first chakras are usually on my heart and soul’s hit list with what it is trying to alchemise.

The second stanza is a reminder of the grief and distress which comes, not just with the actual physical pain, but with the opening of spaces we thought we could get by denying, forgetting or pretending we were okay with.

The third stanza – for me – talks of a homecoming. To return to our bodies. To return to all the places we have forgotten we fit within ourselves. Less like matryoshkas and more like a kintsugi pot being reassembled so our fractures are healed with precious metal and we become something beautiful in our pain and our healing. We don’t hide the places we have been hurt or broken; they become part of the wonder and beauty of the fabric of our being. We no longer ascribe shame to these parts of ourselves. We embrace ourselves as one precious whole.

The final stanza is an invitation to return to yourself through touch. Where the perfect expectation of yourself meets the imperfect projections you have also created in the reality of the flesh and are all welcomed in, and loved. In truth, every part of you, and yourself as a whole, is perfect for where you are in this moment. Skin-to-skin you remember this.


The Knight of Pentacles is slowly moving. He progresses with single-minded focus and determination. He can be relied on to get things done. This is the energy the mind/ego has enlisted to help shut away pain. The Knight of Pentacles is reliable and trustworthy at whatever he throws his weight behind. And it’s the same energy you are able to call on to embrace all parts of yourself and begin the journey of integrating all of you into your body, through releasing, healing, loving and accepting your body.

The Knight is also a reminder of the beauty and power of small simple steps toward a goal. Of daily practices that help to ground and heal. We may not suddenly love ourselves with a fiery bonfire passion of a first attraction and that’s okay. Self love, self acceptance and physical healing to wellness take time. They take effort, time and commitment. We are asked to put one foot (literally) in front of the other, over and over again.

What daily practices can you enlist, that require less than 5 minutes of your time, that included skin-on-skin time and invocation of self acceptance, gratitude or self love?

What intention can you set to invite in greater ease and love to your relationship with your body?


Queen of Cups is an invitation into the deepest inner chambers of our being. She is a party for one, and one alone, and moves the energy out of logic, rational thought into a place where the communion with self transcends language, thought or belief. She is an invitation into deep immersion, love and quiet. This is where true healing can be incepted, nurtured and held. There is where the body can be heard with clarity and non-judgement. Where the all parts of the self can be together as one.

She is also a reminder of surrender born of faith. If the Knight is adept at putting one foot in front of the other, the Queen does not need certainty to place her foot. She does so from a space of deep love and trust, in knowing she has the capacity the bring about healing and wellness.

Where do you feel pain or discomfort in your body? If you can withdraw into a place of inner quiet and stillness, can you hear what your body is trying to communicate to you? Can you hear the remedies for what ails you?


Last week, I pulled The Lover and The Devil, with hints again to the phoenix rising. This week with the Knight and Queen unity and breaks with power come from a place of personal mastery, of being in the body and what we individually do to hold ourselves in pain away from physical unity and the joy that comes with truly being in our body, rather than using and abusing our body as an invisible vehicle that move us through life.


Riot Act, Pearl Jam

The Soul Lyrical Weekly Song #2

Each week I do a live broadcast on Facebook based on a custom built cut-up poem and two tarot cards. This is the condensed notes from that transmission for the week beginning Monday 29th April. The original poem is available for purchase here for $15 including postage.


Source Text: Running Backward Over Sand, Stephanie Dowrick

The poem speaks to the wounding of the divine masculine. The ‘he’ of the opening line is the he in all of us, regardless of what gender we embody or identify with.

Each of us carries the energy of the feminine and masculine within. It is our birth right to experience both in harmony with each other, yet for most individuals living on earth at the moment, that has not been our lived experience, though many are becoming aware and working toward healing the wounding in each part of their energy.

The poem is an invitation to listen to where the divine masculine cries out, where it shouts and screams; where it weeps. This is the road map into the wounding.

The divine masculine within many of us is trapped, anxious or repulsed by what it has become and this week is as good as any to have the discussion around these places, either by journaling, pulling cards (I’ve created a Whole of Me: Divine Masculine spread), in seeking spiritual guidance or opening to honest conversations with others.

If you take the time this week to listen, to feel, to see… what wounds reveal themselves within you? Or within the Collective? Are you ready to step up to play a role as a healer? To embrace and love the Divine Masculine within? Where are you still buying into outdated discussions, beliefs or patterns of control?


This was not a surprise to see, given the strong sense as the poem built itself that it was  speaking to/of the Divine Masculine.

The Lovers carries the energy of divine unity and integration of the masculine and feminine, in relationship to each other within us and in how we engage with others.

It is also the card of choice and in concert with the poem it speaks to the choices we have made, the choices others have made, and the choices we make in the future to bring these two energetic aspects of ourselves into harmony… or to continue with separation and duality to push them further apart.

If we do not have the choice to heal, because not everyone has the privilege of that right now, we can choose to acknowledge and witness it.

How have you experienced unity and inner harmony of the divine masculine and feminine? Or have you seen it experienced in others. Are you making choices to move toward unity, or are you investing in dis-unity and duality? Are you able to give yourself permission to love all parts of yourself, regardless of how you feel about them, and to sit in the culpability of their past actions?


Again, this was not surprise to see.

The Devil speaks not only to the places where we have given away our power, but to the places where power has been taken from us. In aspect to the poem, it speaks to the ways in which disunity presents as seductive or disruptive patterns, situations, habits or addictions.

The Devil dances with your heart in his hands…if you choose for this to be the case. This is making love with pain. The interesting thing about the Devil card is always to remember the prison is not one with a door. It is a prison created from air, but one built of the disempowerment inherent in shame and  despair.

Where are you attached to unhealthy patterns of thinking, relating or behaving that wound your divine masculine? That keeps the small boy within, scared and silent? How do you disempower the divine masculine in others? How do you allow others to disempower it in you?


Last week, the first card pulled with the Death card, rendered as the phoenix in the Shadowscapes Tarot. The phoenix appears in this week’s poem reminding us that we are a continuity of experience and we are rising. We are always rising. It is also a reminder, in relation to the poem, that we can sit both with joy and despair — there is room for both in our transitions, our transformations, shifts and future directions.

POEM SONGLIST (from random shuffle while building)

Leaving Home – Jebediah
Play With Fire – Vance Joy
Painless – Baby Animals
Scar – Missy Higgins
Better Days – Pete Murray
Tip of my Tongue – Diesl
Before Too Long – Paul Kelly
Bittersweet – Hoodoo Gurus

The Soul Lyrical Weekly Song #1

Each week I do a live broadcast on Facebook based on a custom built cut-up poem and two tarot cards. This is the condensed notes from that discussion on the insight and suggestions for the week ahead. The original poem is available for purchase here for $15 including postage.

The Poem

Source Text: Let Me Sing You Gentle Songs (Linda Olsson)

The opening line speaks to the density of our experience. We are the forest and what we have been through is so weighty, so overwhelming, that we can feel like we cannot find the path in us or through us.

What final stanza suggests a warping of expectations, thought patterns and hope to assume an indefinite dark night of the soul – to demonise a path of simplicity, lit and clearly cut, as one littered with obstacles and devastation?

Where does the poem speak directly to your experience?


Death is the card of organic endings, of cycles begetting cycles. It is not the Tower card that brings unexpected and often catastrophic change, Death is a known, and anticipated conclusion to something.

Death here, as depicted by the phoenix, speaks to the relentless intensity of the evolution we have all been going through and the transition point which leaves us feeling as though we are incapable of continuing on. (For me it’s been more than three years, with each year becoming more overwhelming. It may be a shorter or longer time for you.)

In birth the ‘I can’t do this’ signals transition and the cusp of a shift in energy toward bringing something tangible forth and out of chaotic intensity.

If you feel as though you’ve been carrying anything that no longer serves you, if you feel as though you’ve been lugging about ‘bags of deadness’ this week is an invitation to drop it and leave it behind.

This baggage may have connections to anger or grief. The baggage may be connected to other emotions. Whatever it is, this is baggage you are sick-to-death of carrying with you.

What is death calling you in to take a closer look at? What have you been denying is ending, or needs to end? What are you willing to let go of this week with certainty and compassion? What are you still holding onto that is not in alignment. That is not in your highest good.

The Sun

The Sun is the energy of the Self in its highest illumination. In its greatest alignment. It is a symbol of life and growth.

This week, The Sun speaks to an invitation to grow toward something new. Something of your choosing. Something which brings light, joy and illumination. What you want to grow toward does not have to be a major achievement. Or something momentous. It doesn’t have to be your soul purpose or mission (though it can be if you want it it be all of these).

It can be something as simple as a new commitment to yourself. It could be for more joy. Or less drama. More stability. Greater peace.

With the Sun and Uranus meeting in Taurus, and Venus and Chiron meeting in Aries, it’s a perfect week to consider your core values as something to commit to.

What core value could you choose to grow toward as an inside job and then as a navigation beacon beyond? What are you willing to open to, to allow yourself to put down roots for — just for you? For the place inside that desires nurturing only you are able to provide?

Poem Songlist (from random shuffle while building the poem)

Via Spotify
Let’s Dance – David Bowie
Tainted Love – Soft Cell
China Girl – David Bowie
Good Thing – Fine Young Cannibals
Don’t Dream It’s Over – Crowded House
Drive – The Cars
Everything Little Things She Does Is Magic – The Police
End of the Line – The Traveling Wilberries
Call Me – Blondie
Higher Love – Steve Windwood