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Saturday, 6 April 2013

Those cups. They're just so deep.

Cosmic Tarot, US Games 1988
Oooh he's intense. The Prince of Cups from the Cosmic Tarot, US Games 1988. Now who does he remind me of? He's sort of a little bit Johnny Deppish, I think. In a smoothed-over, blanded-out, smoldery perfume ad rendition.

(The artist who painted these images seems to really have liked monogrammed jacket pockets. Just an observation.)

This Prince of Cups, according to Jean Huet's companion book, is not much like the daydreaming Knight of Cups from the Rider Waite Smith decks. Certainly nothing like the innocent Page of Cups. She goes into some detail about the scorpion, the snake on a pole (Rod of Asclepius) and the Anubis figure rowing the boat in the background over the water, in silhouette. To be honest, I'd taken no notice of these details, because I couldn't get past the whites of Johnny Depp's eyes, the Anton Lavey beard and the feathered hair. But now that Huet points them out to me, I can see how they help to emphasize this court card's character. Yes, he's intense, passionate, given to stormy emotions and stony vendettas. He's got depths (or thinks he does).

I take back what I said earlier about the daydreaming Knight of Cups. I'd forgotten that his mooning around comes from the same place that can lead him to become a stalker, or to make grandiose, foolish, or even self-destructive gestures in the name of loyalty or love. Whether he is the Knight of Cups in RWS or Prince of Cups in the Cosmic Tarot, he takes himself, his emotions and his relationships with others, both friend and foe, very seriously.

This is a guy who just never really lightens up. What's another word for intense? Forceful, passionate, agonizing, all-consuming, extreme, acute, fanatical, fervent, keen...there's no 'fun' or 'amusing' anywhere in the bunch.

I think the Prince of Cups is the ultimate 'Get over yourself' card. But I sort of think that about all the Cups courts!


  1. You had me laughing out loud at the "ultimate 'Get over yourself' card" bit! And this guy, well... He takes his emotions seriously, but that doesn't mean they actually are. He can be passionately in love with A one day, and then devoted to B by the following weekend. They are always absolutely the love of his life, until they aren't anymore. And as with people, so with ideas - as you point out, a bit of a fanatic. And yet, he might be a fervent Greenpeacer one day, then a fanatical Christian the next week...

    Yeah, okay, you can tell I'm not a fan, either ;)

  2. His intense face reminded me of Barnabas from the original Dark Shadows tv soap lol

    1. Ah good old Barnabas Collins. I haven't seen the travesty starring Johnny Depp. Shame on what they did to such classic TV!