as I walked across the desert
I met a man upon the sands
'Why do you cross the desert?' he said
'Tis hard, but must be done.
There is no shade in the city now,
just turning wheels of bronze.
If I walk, if I endure, then I can join the world again.'
He bowed his hooded head, and I asked him in turn;
'Why do you stay here in the desert?
What do you do upon the sands?'
Said he, 'The city is but turning wheels,
the sands but empty ground.
Here, the birds fly free; like them
I make my shade from freedom
I prosper in my solitude
My world is on these sands.'
Dreaded continuity; there is no desert on the Intuitive Page Of Wands, I just intuited one, and here it is, the moment I turn my next card. And it's perfect; I don't recall seeing one on a Five of Pentacles before, I recall more midnight flights than harsh sunlight here, but god, I like this.
The Five of Pentacles is that moment where the security of the Four, that treasurebox with a man inside (or vice versa), is exposed to a new dimension; time. And time is not kind to locks, for there is always a new lockpick. It doesn't matter what happened, if the scene of the Four even occurred prior to the given situation, but this is a Pentacle in the flow of time; it erodes, becomes sand, and is carried far from the safety of the city.
In spite of the card's despondency and signs of hardship, I feel it points towards a happy ending. You can learn a lot from having the supposedly secure things in life give way - you can learn what there is left after security has gone; how huge the world is, and how bountiful; how there is more to good fortune than keeping the same possessions in the same place for all time. The Five of Pentacles travels with few burdens, but with its back bowed; because of those few burdens, it can learn to raise its head to the sun again.
Images of the Five of Pentacles:
The RWS shows two figures walking past a church; one is ragged, and I think is only half shod - the other is disabled. It is snowing. The missing shoe may be the source of my optimism about the card - my shadow, Sendalin, usually appears to me barefoot, and he is known to be optimistic in even the most peculiar circumstances.
The Osho Zen 'Outsider': look closely, and you'll see that the padlock isn't actually closed, something the Outsider has seemingly neglected to notice in his hurry to perve wistfully over the place he's not inside of.
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