Land of Flood and Drought revisited (Five of Cups) + Addendum

I’m beginning at the ending today, with a card/collage that holds deep personal meaning …

It grew out of this cloth, Land of Flood and Drought, which I deeply love …

IMG_8497E

Having drawn the Five of Cups, it struck me that the cloth had five strips of blue documenting the rainfall during the year 2015. As I went through the blog, I found five images that fit alongside the strips of blue.

A FEMA map of the floodplain behind our Hill Country house …

flood map

The bridge over the Blanco River that was overtopped by the Memorial Day flood

blanco bridge

A close-up of the stitching on the Land of Flood and Drought cloth …

flood stitch

The prayer flag I stitched following the Halloween Flood that same year …

boot

And the cloth stranded high in a tree above the river, witness to the peak floodstage …

flood flag

Five for the water that brought such unimaginable sadness … until now, the time of Covid-19.

  • 78 Degrees: Fives concern struggle and pain … the emotional reaction to loss … the river represents the flow of sorrow, but the bridge symbolizes consciousness and determination … it leads from the loss of the past to the new beginnings of the future
  • Kitchen Table Tarot: walk respectfully away from the past … drink in the present … walk so carefully toward your precious future
  • The Creative Tarot: there’s something still left, you just need to turn around with clear eyes and see it … part of the process, however, is to mourn the loss

Addendum:

Dee’s comment reminded me there is more to the Five of Cups that I meant to convey …

From Kitchen Table Tarot:

The person is staring intently at the three cups that have spilled and is completely ignoring the two cups behind them.

Imagine the person crying until their eyelids are swollen. Taking a few deep, shuddering breaths … the shoulders go back. They’ve probably got the whiffles (when you cry so hard you can’t catch your breath) and won’t be able to stop shaking for a bit.

They turn around and nearly walk into the full cups behind them. They pick those up, drink deeply from one, and then walk away toward that bridge in the background, carrying the other so carefully, to avoid spilling a drop.

17 thoughts on “Land of Flood and Drought revisited (Five of Cups) + Addendum

    1. I am inspired by seeing what we, the people of the world, are capable of when we must … it gives me great hope in terms of our ability to mitigate climate change if we choose to

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  1. The way that you marshal your personal visual vocabulary is really impressive. I don’t think I realized until now how bad the flooding was. But then, I had other things weighing on me. The flooding goes to the three tipped over cups. I hope spring makes clear what fills the remaining two.

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  2. Liz, this poignant card speaks to just about every element in each of the Tarot sources that you have listed. Your Land of Flood and Drought cloth is deeply moving as is your boot prayer flag. I remember the devastation from your photos and telling of the flood, especially the sorrow over the antique store in Wimberly that you and Don loved. The boot is so beautifully depicted and holds such spirit, in cloth, as well as in this Tarot card. Yes it is a symbol for Texas but it also speaks so simply yet eloquently of resilience, as it did in 2015, as it does now, because no matter how hard or painful, we go on by putting one foot in front of another, day after day.i

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    1. I’m tempted to compile a book from the comments you have written throughout the blog community … surely the title “Marti’s Wisdom” would fit it perfectly

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  3. Also Liz, I’m getting double notifications (old and new blogs). So I’m gonna unsubscribe to both and then resubscribe to new one.

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  4. Speaking of words, yesterday an email from my grands apologizing for not adding paragraphs, this week, to our round robin story challenge. (Our story is doing well, lots of admiration on my part, for their challenging story spin and creativity!, sure is keeping me on my toes) They wrote to tell me that they have loads of on-line homework and class projects as well as added household chores…I had to laugh at that last comment because I think there was an embedded wish that I might have a word with their parents re the chores…ha! nope.

    They go to a private school at Mills College and the workload is high because this is their last year at the school as they will graduate from 5th grade and transition to middle school. The basic public schools in CA leave a lot to be desired so they both applied to private and charter schools. I’m so proud of them because they have chosen to go to different schools in different cities. Rowie will go to a private school and Spencer will go to a charter school, both, wonderfully suited to their particular academic strengths and interests. Hats off to their parents for letting them make these choices because it will be a nightmare commute once school resumes…? Their email was delightful and contained a lot of emojis’ and giffs and doubly caused me to miss them even more than normal.

    Missing them resulted in me changing the Love cloth that was hanging outside. I took it down, totally reworked it, inked the word Thanks on a remnant of my curandera cloth, restitched it all and to honor my grand kids, added a bit of California to the cloth to thank the Helpers here in New Mexico, in California and wherever the winds will take my message across the country. California was represented by two green glass beads from my granddaughter Rowie, stitched at the top and bottom of the Thanks cloth. Spence had given me his CA Junior Ranger badge so it is pinned to the top of the cloth with the word Love and the revamped cloth is now hanging back on the tree out front.

    Look to the helpers has taken on a new depth for in this little challenge with my grand kids, I help them and they help me and we all love using words. I use a lot of words often in my comments but the best ones are the simplest, Love and Thanks.

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    1. Marti – your words are by turns thought-full, supportive, humorous, philosophical … and always wise. Hence the desire to bring them all together somehow. But they are so contextual that I fear something would be lost in the translation. That said, I am delighted that one of the flags flying outside carries your words … which perfectly fit the day and times.

      I totally understand the fall-off in grandkid connectivity in the past week. We have seen much the same and while I miss the daily contacts, I take heart that it’s an indication that they (and their parents) are settling in routines. How fortunate we are, though, to have been able to support them in those early days. And I suspect the character of our connections will be deeper as we look back on the covid days … how we made it through.

      Somehow I got behind on replying to comments … so belated thanks for your prompt to reconsider my peace flags … I think today will be the day.

      And thank you for being one of the helpers … for all of us

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  5. I don’t believe I visited here way back when, in the time of the flood, but your words and depiction here speak so clearly. Your stitching always floors me. Lately, the stitches on the creamy tan, from afar, reminds me of matzoh! We see from the perspective of the season!

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    1. Matzoh was a part of my young adulthood, as I went to a school where the majority of students were Jewish. I remember reading Michener’s book The Source hoping to better understand their traditions, but it was attending services with friends that I best remember. I do regret that I never attended a Seder, though.

      So yeah, how we look back … this blog has been a wonderful memory keeper and I do wish I had kept journals before now. But between raising a family and working (often multiple jobs), who had the time?

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  6. I love those cloths too Liz – the spirit in them, the gentle resilience and the sense of home they evoke. They are special and this tarot is also one I can understand better. I especially like your addition to the post, it rings so true. And I learned a new word – whiffles! Thank you.

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    1. Fiona – I have gotten so caught up in the Texas Tarot that I sometimes forget to put words to the many thoughts and influences and swirl through my mind. And I have to confess that the word “whiffles” makes me laugh, as I have long been a whiffle ball fan … and a well-hit whiffle baseball does indeed make a sound much like a shuddering breath.

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