Tuesday, May 15, 2012


She looks into the mouth of the lion
knows fear, that intimate
fiend that stalks
her night and day.
Fear has become an abusive lover
that promises tomorrow
will be different
but never is.

The lion’s hot breath stirs her senses.
She feels the adrenalin
begin its course through
her small body.
It races to her limbs
feeds them.
This time
she doesn’t turn away.

This time she stares into the hot abyss.
Demands her heart to slow,
to seek another rhythm.
One connected to
heaven and earth.
One that rides time
as the vulture rides thermals
searching for life.

© 2012 Joanne Elliott

This poem is from a writing exercise I did during a weekly poetry salon I hold in my home. A friend did the exercise…we had to choose a tarot card and then write what came to mind.


  1. Joanne! Wonderful! I have an entire manuscript The Poetry of Cards...I simply fall into them and lose myself...as I mentioned, this is my favorite from any deck...always has been. The meaning is one thing, but I simply resonate to it...no matter the illustrator...very similar to the way these words are resonating with me as well...just fantastic (Not hard to tell I'm excited...babbling via blog comment!)

    1. LOL! Thanks Natasha! I always enjoy your comments.

      I was in a ritual once where one of the priestesses facilitating invoked Sekhmet, the lion headed goddess of Ancient Egypt. She went around the room and gave a one word message to each person. My message from Sekhmet was, "Strong."

  2. i am glad that she found some freedom from it you know....Fear has become an abusive lover
    that promises tomorrow
    will be different
    but never is...ugh that is the most apt description i have read of it in a while

  3. Your poem suits the card well( no pun intended!) and is full of the strength and purpose that we need to draw on when fear is trying to take control. Good stuff, Joanne--the Tarot has quite a romance to it, and is rich in symbols like this.

  4. What an interesting way into this subject.. most effective for me is the incremental steps to self-determination.. that certainly has strength.

  5. Very good, calms herself and faces the lion, the adrenalin, the fear and sends it off to who knows where. Good. gardenlilie.com

  6. Full of great descriptors and an important lesson, very touching, as if she is facing the biggest terrors.

  7. oh i love...Fear has become an abusive lover
    that promises tomorrow
    will be different
    but never is... fear can bind us like nothing else and i'm glad she managed to face it...spoke very personally to me as well...so..thanks

  8. Great response to the card. We all have to face fear some time; great when we can stare it down, not give in and then succeed and ride those thermals.