My Year-Wheel Tarot Reading for 2021

My time-honored tradition of performing divination to foresee the year ahead with my calendrical/zodiacal houses/clock face spread continues unabated. However, due to being very busy working New Year’s Eve and Day and needing yesterday to rest and decompress, I had to wait until today to actually do my Tarot spread. Come join me on this journey of (self-)discovery, won’t you?

The Unmanifest

Cards drawn but not yet revealed. This is The Witches Tarot by Ellen Cannon Reed

Preface: Astrological Context at Time of Reading 

The time of draw was 11 a.m. CST today, 3 January, 2021. Planetary factors in the backdrop to consider include a Grand Trine in Earth Signs (Sun Sign Virgo me loves these!) between the Waning Moon at 9° Virgo, Retrograde Uranus at 6° Taurus, and the Sun at 13° and Mercury at 22° of Capricorn, respectively. This energy provides stability and guides practical decision-making, as well as analysis of the cards I just drew.

A Fire Sign Trine (not a “Grand” one in the technical sense) exists between Mars at 28° Aries and the South Node at 19° and Venus at 23° of Sagittarius, respectively. How can lessons learned from past relationships give us a sense of courage and even optimism in breaking unhealthy patterns? Who is currently in your prized social circle? If someone isn’t aligned with your spiritual worldview, consider cutting ties (South Node). 

Invocation to Hekate

As always, I spend several minutes beforehand shuffling and invoking the Goddess Hekate, One of my Patron Deities. This is my simple chant (doggerel verse, but hey, it works!) that helps me slip into a light state of trance:

Hidden Hekate, to me show

What it is that I must know!

Help me to evolve and grow;

The baleful past I now let go!

Libanomancy at my Hekate shrine. Statue sculpted by the gloriously talented Jeff Cullen of

My Spread

The Spread

Cards are read counterclockwise beginning in the “9:00” clock face position, or First House/month of January.

I felt compelled to use Ellen Cannon Reed’s The Witches Tarot (copyright 1989 Llewellyn Publications, Ltd.), a deck with intentional Pagan imagery (see the Horned God card used in lieu of the traditional Devil in the photo above). The deck has a corresponding book (sold separately) with extensive Qabalistic discussion and suggested pathworkings for the cards, for those of you who are inclined towards Qabala study.

Reading over my notes from last year’s Year-Wheel spread, I see I uncannily foretold my epic life changes, from moving and selling my home (I had no plan of doing either when 2020 began! See what I wrote for December with the 9 of Pentacles and the prediction of major financial gain); the latter activity is largely responsible for my Significator choice last year of the Queen of Pentacles. It’s very amazing how it all played itself out, and it goes to show that no matter how “badly” the external world is faring (the global pandemic and economic devastation), you can always prosper and thrive! It’s all about your individual Fate and what you personally signed up to accomplish in your brief stint on this whirling blue ball we call Planet Earth.

Well, if last year was my breakthrough year of material gain, signified by the Queen of Pentacles, this year I’m making spiritual advancement my priority, which my Significator card of the Princess of Cups (in the center of the spread) indicates. 

Princess of Cups

Princess of Cups from Ellen Cannon Reed’s Witches Tarot (copyright 1989)

Reed places this Princess (the equivalent of the Page in other Tarot decks) in an autumnal context (Water equated with the Cardinal Direction of West and thus Autumn in Wiccan belief) of harvest and the ending of her journey. She’s symbolically handing over her cup to someone else/another pair of hands, having fulfilled her emotional quest. 

I interpret the Princess/Page of Cups differently, as a beginning—of using intuition and meditation to offer spiritual services (my Priestess Craft) to others, work towards a spiritual goal. I see the Divine handing a Cup of Inspiration to me. I predict my Priestessing and Death Midwife skills will really be called upon by others this year.

The Water theme spills over, if you will, into…

Card 1/January/First House: The Eight of Cups

Eight of Cups

The First House is the House of the Self. This is a good card that, to me, clearly indicates the result of having been granted Divine inspiration from my Significator card: I’m making the decision to let go of my former definition of “success” (a “worldly” one) to aim for Something Higher. It’s a letting go of material ambition in pursuit of a fuller, more spiritual vocation. If you were to look at my natal chart, you’d see Neptune at 4° of Sagittarius in my 10th House, on the cusp of my Midheaven. Somehow, it’s my destiny to have my spirituality as my career! This month may very well see a major initiative in that direction, something beyond professional astrology. Hmmm…

Card 2/February/Second House: Death

The Second House is the House of Earned Income, so major changes could be coming my way. How will I invest the earnings of my home sale? That is one aspect. The other, of course, is the more dreaded literal aspect of Death. Given the preponderance of cards from the Suit of Swords in this spread, I cannot help but feel that the death of one or more loved ones draws near, and my Death Midwife skills will be put to use.

Card 3/March/Third House: The Empress

The great pendulum of Being and Nonbeing swings from Death to the fullness of New Life within the teeming womb of the Goddess Hathor (so I see Her in this card), depicted as The Empress. Her Venusian blessings bestow unto me renewal and the pleasure of creativity.


Card 4/April/Fourth House: Three of Wands

3 of Wands

The Goddess energy directly flows from The Empress into this card: Reed’s illustration shows the Triple Goddess of Wiccan lore (from left to right, Crone, Maiden, and Mother), forming a Triangle of Art with the Wands. I foresee in the month of April that I will establish dominance in the arts or enterprise or both!

The Fiery Creativity of Wands carries forward into…

Card 5/May/Fifth House: The Prince of Wands

This Prince on a mission could indicate the start of a new journey (not a long one or located out of the country) for me. He might also signify the arrival of a new (Fire Sign?) lover for me as well, a faithful and loyal one. That really would correspond with the Fifth House as the House of Romance. This Prince may be a stranger with good intentions, come to deliver welcome news that may be journey- or love-related. Reed shows the questing young man walking, aptly, through a spring landscape of blossoming flowers. (Please don’t let this person be an[other] Aries, please don’t let this person be an[other] Aries… LOL!) 

Card 6/June/Sixth House: The Chariot

If the journey in May is a short one, do I go on a more long-distance (overseas?) journey in June? That’s what the Charioteer seems to be saying to me. It might even be a work-related trip, as the Sixth House is the House of Day-to-Day Work. The travel could be inner journeying, too, of course—yoking my consciousness to the Divine (reinforcing my Princess of Cups Significator card). The Sixth House is also the House of Health so this is a very healing card, one that shows alchemical integration (the different-colored sphinxes) boosting my physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual wellness. Yes, please!

Card 7/July/Seventh House: Eight of Swords

Commonly hailed as the House of Marriage or Partnerships (including legal/business ones, not just long-term romantic partners), the Seventh House is also, believe it or not, the House of Open Enemies. (If you’re curious, the Twelfth House is known as the House of Hidden Enemies.) Having a dicey card in this position makes me think of legal matters and the need to pay attention in the month of July to the fine print before signing any new contracts. If I experience temporary paralysis from anxiety, the way out is through well-coordinated action. Look at how these dudes in this card are poised to strike! Banish thoughts of self-doubt and move forward confidently!

8 of Swords

Card 8/August/Eighth House: The Prince of Cups

This Prince is the other half or higher octave of my Significator card of the Princess of Cups. In a standard Tarot deck, he would be the equivalent of a Knight.

This Prince signifies the arrival of good news regarding assets, passive income (think inheritances, insurance payouts, secondary sources of income) OR the arrival of a new (Water Sign?) lover. Money and sex/intimacy are both the domain of the Eighth House, the House of Sex, Death, and Occult Mystery! 

If this Prince is a person, I imagine it would be a lover who shares my spirituality and/or is psychic, a magical person. The Prince could also be bringing some kind of a proposal my way, business or marriage! This Prince is said to indicate the manifestation of the next card in a spread, ooh-WEE!

Card 9/September/Ninth House: The Horned One

The Horned One

Hail the Witch Father! ❤

Since this is an intentionally Pagan deck, I don’t read negative “Devil” connotations associated with other Tarot symbology into this card. This is my Witch Father pouring forth His benediction on me (and my lover, apparently), plain and simple. If the month of August does bring me a new lover, my Horned Lord grants His blessing on our carnal delights. So Mote It Be!

The Ninth House is the one I refer to as the House of Expanded Horizons: what adventures will expand my consciousness and the amount of stamps collected in my passport? From marriage to religious experiences (the Ninth House rules Religion and Philosophy, as well as the Law) to long-distance physical journeys to armchair ones, the Jupiterian-themed pursuits of this House will be adventures to remember in my birth month of September!

Card 10/October/Tenth House: Five of Swords

If this Tarot spread were arranged in a clock face, this card would fall in the “midnight” position, which tells me that the source of conflict associated with the Five of Swords might come out of nowhere—hidden enemies, especially in the workplace, since the Tenth House is the House of Career/Public Status. I must beware of potential slander, take magical measures to protect myself against what Ifá calls “witchcraft of the mouth.”

The imagery in this card is perhaps my favorite depiction of the Five of Swords because it shows the underdogs prevailing against their enemies—they stabbed one of the trio of villains—and rescuing a woman and child in the process!

5 of Swords

Card 11/November/11th House: Three of Swords

Well, it truly sucks to have something as contentious as the Five of Swords followed by the heartbreak of the Three of Swords, but there you have it. What’s interesting here is Reed’s illustration depicts a female figure entering a gateway—she’s about to set out on an ordeal path, and it’s going to seriously suck, but she will be a wiser and stronger person for having undergone the ordeal.

Spread 2

The Three of Swords is in the “11:00” position of the clock face of this spread

This loss can speak to loss of a broken heart variety caused by betrayal from a friend or an acquaintance from a group or an association, since the Eleventh House rules Friends and Groups. Perhaps the slanderous person from the previous month causes me to root out a false friend from my life, and I officially sever ties in November? Or perhaps the heartbreak is that of the loss of a friend in the sense of physical death (I had one of  those last year, quite unexpected, and I’m still grieving her untimely death)? Or a breakup with the lover from August/September? Time will tell.

Whatever the loss, betrayal, or sadness, 2021 ends, apparently, with my need to regroup and begin building a new foundation for myself, which is exactly what the fellow in the following card is doing by forming a rectangle out of swords. He’s doing it behind the scenes, so his enemies can’t see, since the Twelfth House is the House of The Hidden.

4 of Swords

The time for repose is the time to mentally plan a comeback, built on a solid foundation (the rectangle as a solid and the holy number of 4)

Card 12/December/Twelfth House: Four of Swords

While resting from the strife of the past two months, my deep mind will be at work plotting the future. Take the time out to heal (physical) but expend energy (mental) to visualize the new foundation upon which to build life’s experiences for 2022. Stay out of sight and lay low during this process, since the Twelfth House encourages work behind the scenes, with foes being none the wiser. Perhaps a hexing will be in order? Hmmmm….


At a gut level, I find this spread challenging. Some of the cards elicit an instinctual response of dislike/revulsion (Death, the Five and the Three of Swords). However, several of the cards are gloriously good, like The Empress, my Wands cards (the Three, the Prince), The Chariot, and The Horned God. A third of the cards in the spread are Major Arcana ones, indicating the Divine Intelligences/Forces of Fate at work. 

From the Minor Arcana, I have four cards from the Suit of Swords/Elemental Energy of Air; three from the Suit of Cups/Elemental Energy of Water; two from the Suit of Wands/Elemental Energy of Fire; and ZERO from the Suit of Pentacles/Elemental Energy of Earth! What also grabs my attention right away in terms of visual horizontal opposition is the Eight of Cups on the left opposing the Eight of Swords on the Right. Heart versus head, the Emotional Function versus the Thinking/Judging Function. Given my Significator, I know the Heart will prevail.

Vertically, I see a thematic opposition between what I’ve created/manifested in the business world (Three of Wands at the bottom) and the fight to maintain it (Five of Swords at the top). I’m fighting to protect my business and perhaps even my reputation, since Swords can indicate foully wagging tongues. (Stream-of-consciousness Note to Self: Keep contact information for an Intellectual Property attorney close by!)

Having a Princess of Cups and spirituality be the focus of this year is the exact opposite of my materially driven 2020, which was ruled by the Queen of Pentacles (I was that Queen for all of last year). This is going to be an interesting year, auspicious in that it is the Chinese New Year of my sign (the Ox), but it will be a sad year, I sense, since I do foresee physical death for one or more family members or friends. The prospect of one or both of my parents dying is not something I can say I’m emotionally ready for, though I am and have been trying to prepare for it in a legal/medical/”worldly” way. My Death Midwifery work certainly has begun.

May my Holy Powers guard and guide me, and may all of you reading this post be kept safe, healthy, and prosperous now and in the unfolding months!

If you would like me to do this kind of a Tarot spread for you or have your planetary forecast drawn for the next 12, 6, or 3 months, email me at See what the Fates have apportioned unto you!

Happy New Year!


Image courtesy of Jeff Jacobs on Pixabay

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