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Thursday, 14 November 2013

Splash a little holy water on your jaded soul

Today's card from the Vampire Tarot by Robert Place is the Knight of Cups, or Knight of Holy Water, in this instance. The figure on the card is Joseph Sheridan LeFanu, an Irish author and writer of the novel Carmilla, published in 1872. It was this book that inspired Bram Stoker to write about the supernatural. Carmilla is considered the most important vampire story after Dracula. (An interesting side note about Carmilla...people tend to think lesbian vampires are a product of the shlocky early 70s horror flicks, but Carmilla, one of the earliest literary vampires, is a lesbian, so this notion has a long lineage.)

According to Robert Place's brief notes in the companion book, Le Fanu's style 'introduces psychological insights that were innovative at the time,' and so the card is said to represent someone who has insight into the unconscious and people's hidden motives. In other words, a sensitive type.It must have been pretty tough to come up with a character from Dracula or vampire legend that would fill the bill of Knight of Cups. I guess this link, tenuous though it may be, will serve.

I myself will always associate Knight of Cups with a particular character from the film American Beauty, the boy called Ricky, who spends his time mooning about on the sidelines of life, filming plastic shopping bags floating about on the breeze, and proclaiming life to be so beautiful that sometimes he feels like he 'can't take it'. I've provided a link many times to the clip in question, but I find it so perfect for the Knight of Cups that I can't resist showing it again:

Maybe I've drawn this card today to remind me to try not to be such a cynical butt hole. ha ha ha ha Seriously, though. Sometimes maybe seeing fathomless beauty in a bit of trash blowing around might make a nice change. (And with the level of litter picking our council provides, may as well try to get something positive out of all those blowy crisp packets, eh?)


  1. My daughters have introduced me to the modern vampire series; they're crowded with knights of cups; all brooding and whining about lost feelings and wanting to be human again etc.

    1. Yes, the Byronic hero. But you don't really find that so much in the earlier vampire stories, which Place's Vampire Tarot aligns itself with. Dracula was the first of them, but in the book he was a walking corpse with vestiges of human feeling. I blame Ann Rice for these whiny, sparkly types. They are all direct descendants of Louis from Interview with a Vampire.

    2. I totally agree with you but I must say having to watch the series from the corner of my eye( or sometimes from the tip of my chair) has made me learn to appriciate the whiny guys with their human lovers more. :D

    3. I like a sexy vampire as much as anyone. My favourite is Spike from Buffy. Buffy was an idiot. What wet dishrag Angel was compared to Spike.

    4. Yay! you're my kind of girl. My daughter and I can totally relate to the spike crush.
      He's bloody sexy ;D