Tomorrow is Friday the 13th which seems as good a day as any to give Death its dues.
Despite its bad reputation as part of the tarot Triple-Threat (Death! Devil! Destruction! *woe*), this is often a favourite card of readers, collectors and artists alike. It is cited as being a “make or break” card when deciding whether to purchase a deck or not (most often along with the High Priestess and the Star) and a Google image search shows just how inspiring a concept it is for artists across the board, regardless of their level of interest in tarot.
Death is a universal, inescapable facet of life and is equally as beautiful and colourful and varied. The media asks when the interest in the undead will end and the answer is simple: when there is no more alternative.
Listening to Florence and the Machine’s “Lungs” for the first time this morning, I heard the lyrics to “My Boy Builds Coffins” and 2 verses struck me as being perfect to illustrate the scene in the traditional RWS imagery of the Death card:
“My boy builds coffins for the rich and the poor,
Kings and Queens they’ve all knocked on his door.
Beggars and liars, gypsies and thieves,
They all come to him cause he’s so eager to please.
My boy builds coffins, he makes them all day.
But it’s not just for work and it isn’t for play;
He’s made one for himself,
One for me too.
One of these days he’ll make one for you.”
August 13th also happens to be International Left-Hander’s Day and you know what they say about those types. Not only am I related to one by blood, but by marriage too. I’ll have to remind The Man to wear his “Kill Righty” T-shirt ;)