divination

SPIRITS AND SENIOR PROMS

 

(Humor lightens fearful actions)

 

Time to start communing

With the spirits

Family, friends

I’m not a Ouija person

It lied to me decades ago

Although

My friend really did

Meet and marry a Louis

But I never met Bruce

The New York lawyer

Did go to my senior prom

With a New Yorker

We fought

He wanted me to stop

Hanging at coffee houses

Screaming about war

And most of all

He hated my super-size

Peace earrings

Anyway

You know I’m getting old

Can’t seem to tell a succinct story

This is a poem

About Ouija boards

Spirits

Not proms

Pink gown

Hated pink

Mom got it on sale

Insisted I get my brunette hair

Teased and sprayed

Into an itchy pile

Atop my head

Radical chic

More fitting for my frizz

Not quite in yet

What’s with me

And the senior prom?

Okay, spirits

I’m old now

Wanna know

What’s doing in the

Dead Dimension

I’m getting cremated

Why would I want to

Waltz through paradise

In a five-foot frame

And have to keep my

Weight down

Using a heavenly elliptical

Into kingdom come?

So I’m willing to trade in my body

For something nicer

No one wants to try this

Handmade Ouija with me

All the way from the smallest continent

Overpaid

But don’t think I need money

Where I’m headed

Might as well spend it

So Lone Practitioner that I am

Will lightly place both hands

On the planchette

Dogs will be quiet

Because I’ve tryptophaned them out

With chicken jerky

(Ten dollars for 16 pieces!

WTH is wrong with Walmart?)

Yeah, ok

I’ll be damned

–I am, I know—

Draw a protective circle

Sit amid a bronze bowl of salt

Fake crystal bowl of water

Aromatic sandalwood in a resin holder

Elephant trunk to hold the incense

Supposed to be a good luck totem

Flickering white candle from Save-A-Lot

With a picture of a saint

The acrylic moves

Across hand etched wood

Spelling out ——-

Well, can’t tell you

But I asked respectfully

Asked for a kind soul to guide me

And halfway through

The answer

The essence flew

Not sure where

Relieved?

Somewhat

Will save it for another day…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

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GOOGLE-MANCY

 

So growing up with cartomancy

Consulting the cards

Or tasseomancy

Consulting the tea leaves

Or any of those other mancies

Ouija boarding the spirit world

Maybe even tipping the magic eight ball

For a quickie answer

Has now morphed

For me

Into querying

The O-Great-Google

For answers

Seriously

I said to myself

Why are you asking this question?

But here it is:

Is it ok to prefer strumming

Over what I think is the

More-difficult fingerstyle

Or is that a cop out?

And lo!

I’m not the only one who needs to know!

Forums about it all over the net

And my favorite answer is:

The Beatles preferred it

When playing acoustic

And strumming songs of fame

Are associated with Bob Dylan’s early name

On Google

Most everyone said learn both

Most everyone said strumming’s

Not necessarily the easy way out

It’s ok!

Whew!

But then…

I confess

I can guiltily see

A tempting retreat for lazy me

Hmmm, I wonder if I can ask Google

Who my Prince Charming, um,

Who my Ol’ King Charming

Will be…

 

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Victorian Tasseomancy (NPR unattributed)

TO LIVE INSIDE A DECK OF CARDS

To live inside a deck of cards

Safer place to reside

Than the world of flesh

Wouldn’t really be two dimensional

Because the true thinking

Goes on there, not here

In the Third dimension

I shuffle my Drom Ek Romani

The Way of One Gypsy

Amateur drawings first conceived

When very young

Although my artistry never improved

Each card is imbued

With my soul signature

I enter seeking refuge

With my agenda-less friends

(After all, I am their agenda)

When alone and blue

And want to hear the truth

It will not hurt my feelings

Like lies do, as told by

Three-dimensional people

Smiling into my face yet

Secretly sneering

I find myself in a polar universe

The Physical plane

Ice-encrusted imposing castle

Against a blue-tinged sky

Kapuri card 9

Imprisonment

Solitary confinement

Self-imposed?

My thoughts so imprecise

How do I melt the ice

Moving onto a theater stage

Opened curtains for performing serpent

Plane of Emotion

Slobozil Pe Maya card 10

Strip away the illusions

When I cannot accept life

I fantasize

Fine

Just don’t insist on making them a reality

Decades of falling into the same trap

The serpent represents wisdom

He hisses, but kindly

And I move away

Not quite twilight, I reach

A dark cave sheltering huge eyes

Guga card 20

Face your fears

This, then, is the Mental plane

Blinking eyes

Use your eyes

They seem to say

Then process all in your mind

Don’t be blind

How to trust my judgment

Once again a serpent

Wrapped around a tree

Reminiscent of that biblical story

But quite different

The snake, a she, wants me

To stop hanging on her tree

Sap card 12

You will hang here with me

Until you learn

Sacrificing your life

When all along you only need

To let go

This is the Spiritual plane

Trust in the Universe

Listen to what it sings

Most importantly

Trust in yourself

I am now on a bridge

Between the Third and Second dimensions

So safe here with friends

So frightening there

The world like a ring

With facets of faces

Multiple emotions

Directed my way

Don’t make me cross that bridge…

But I do…

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Four Drom Ek Romani cards

WORKING POVERTY

 

From medieval times

Romani women

Peering at palms

Some silken soft

Fewer worn and callused

Mapping wet tea leaves

Extracting colorful dyes from

Precious saffron

Strong spices

Local flora, used to

Embellish wood chips

Painted arcane symbols

Touched by the questor’s hands

Anxiously listening to

Forthcoming flutterings

Struggling to earn a few coins

That will stay sewn

Into the hem of the skirt

Lined with tiny mirrors

Reflecting jakhalo

Whether the Evil Eye

Deliberate or accidental

Part of the colorful clothes

An Eastern European version

Of the sari once worn

Before driven from the homeland

Into a freezing diaspora

Scattering all over the world

Some unluckily becoming slaves

Feeding the maw of

Greedy jaws

Until desrobireja

Emancipation

In the 19th century

Freedom once again

To travel the muddy roads

Never escape, though,

From need and someone else’s greed

Saving those few coins of comfort

In a romanticized job

With longer hours

Than nine to five

I, no better than my ancestors

The working poor

Trying to stay alive…

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE:  A Chance Meeting with a Fortune-Teller, Adrien Moreau 1834-1906

 

 

 

SMITH COMMEMORATIVE

 

Why does Fate

Force some of us to wait

When we wish for Fame?

 

Talent unrewarded

Makes the mind disordered

Future promise dies from shame

 

Finally, dear Pamela Colman Smith

Your artistry depicting magic and myth

Has been lovingly recognized

 

A commemorative tarot tin

Your name first for the deck within

Has given what we prized

 

Rider-Waite never felt right

As I gazed at your art late into the night

When I was a very young girl

 

Like Edgar Allan Poe

So very long ago

You and others stayed hidden like a pearl

 

But genius and ability

Will demand visibility

Although you may never know

 

So like decades before

I read your images interpreting lore

Honoring the gift you did bestow…

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens, ViataMaja

IMAGE: My tin of Smith-Waite tarot cards

 

 

15

 

How random is random

Clicked on the internet generator

15

 

15 is my day of birth

15 in tarot is temptation (some would say the devil)

15 in numerology adds up to 6 and in tarot that is the lovers

15 in Tao Te Ching is my favorite quote about being still

 

Since it is hard for me to remain still and quiet

I need this reminder

In love

But also in life

And here it is hours away from the 15th day of April:

 

“Who can be still
until their mud settles
and the water is cleared by itself?
Can you remain tranquil until right action
occurs by itself?”

 

I don’t think so, but I will try…

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: pagespeed.ce

 

TASSEOMANCY

 

Flowers of jasmine

Floating among leaves

Fallen from the tin

Holding the horror or

Happiness in a message

Harbored within an

 

Erratic placement

Of emblems, symbols

Arranging themselves

Along the sides and bottom

Of an antique cup

That traveled in the wagon

Of a desperate woman

 

Hidden husband

Here lying like the dead

Heaps of vegetables his coffin

Freedom in other European towns

Finding war there too, and like me,

Finding no answer in the leaves of tea

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Tea Leaf Reading, Wikipedia

 

SIGN-SUITABLE TAROT

(for new questors during the penumbral lunar eclipse)

 

Coins mined from the EARTH

PENTACLES willing to teach you

The pleasures of safety in ownership

The joys of being rooted

To what we need and know

 

Holy Grail carrying WATER

In a pure CUP for you to learn

Things of the heart

The secret of balance amid

Raging passions drowning us in

Jealousy, hate, love

 

Slicing the AIR

Invisible, life-giving gases

Piercing SWORD

Mind training in the art of

Thought before action

But never over-intellectualize

The joy of life’s conundrums

And hidden indulgences

 

Burning with FIERY pneuma

WANDS touch your soul

So you may live in the

Spirit of Freedom

Experiencing euphoric moments of

Self-sufficiency while

Floating in the hot darkness of

Solar-centered space

 

Balancing body, emotions, mind and soul

Everyday lessons teach us self-control

 

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Tarot Queens

INTROVERSION

 

Claims of being a lone practitioner

Yet the magnetic pull to be around society

Cannot be denied

A safe haven

In the past

Was to fake being

Extrovertica falsitus

(Damn! Forgot my Latin declensions!)

This time I mean it

No more people

Just me

Practitioning alone

Sure enough

Degree 248 arose randomly

In some arcane book

Associated with Sagittarius

And the number 8

But do not care to read the reasons why

Practicing sortilege and

Observing the sky

Is enough for me

Deep down in the earthy depths

New elements are being created

Likened to inner changes

Occurring in my awareness

Will I finally mature

Grow a tougher skin

Understand that life

Is never fair yet

Always precious

Even to us non-conformists

Who so want to be accepted

But not at the price of our souls…

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

 

“PURE AND STILL…”

 

How odd to be caught between two worlds

The intellectual one, where I eye-roll

When thinking of

The magical one

The one where signs and symbols can fail

Those who straddle the bridge

As it opens, separating the realities

That may come from the simple slip

To the other side.

 

I smile at the ancients poking through

Animal entrails yet I am

Tossing bones symbolically carved

Receiving guidance from

The arrangement on the ground

Random generations of numbers

Representing my next move

Haphazard-ness?

Karma-ness?

 

I misinterpret the arrival of korako

The crow

Seeing only their destruction

Of a Cardinal community

When all along

It was the devastation of

An alternative life

Perhaps a better one?

Who knows?

 

So much safer

To observe

To record

To muse

To envelop oneself

In a mantle of silence…

 

© 2014, 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja), Poetic Alchemy: Talking Blues

IMAGE: My early morning Live Oak