Holiday Cactus and Death Card

Pink blooms of a holiday cactus push out of green leaves. One bloom is on its way out and hanging tenuously onto its stem. For aesthetic sake I could pluck it off but I keep it there as I like to ponder the inevitability of passing.

In this picture I’ve paired the cactus with Catrin Welz-Stein depiction of the Death Card from her magical Tarot of Mystical Moments deck. In the card we see a woman with a skeletal deathlike chest. However, beautiful flowers, mostly lilies signifying innocence, purity and rebirth, spring from the boney carcass. A butterfly, the ultimate motif of transformation, alights on a lily holding the gaze of our female in transit.

It’s difficult to accept the inevitability of death when you’re living. It’s like young people never think they’re going to die and old people fear death because that’s all they think about. My grandmother always used to say she’d come back as a strawberry in her next life. She loved strawberries. I do think it is soothing to accept that death will come but that’s not all there is. Curiosity will give ballast to the journey beyond.

I suppose when it is time the bloom from my holiday cactus will fall to the ground. I don’t need to hurry it along. I do wonder at the cycles of life, how so much depends on mixture, taking in, letting go, finding the right balance between the two and then trusting the process of creation that the universe guarantees.

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