I was talking with folks about the need for more decks with queer people and people of color (or hey- queer people of color) and am planning to make a list of them on my blog for people who are feeling the same way. I get that traditional decks can be read for everyone. I mean, I often identify as the King of Swords in tarot and I am not a white dude. HOWEVER, as time goes on, we as a community KNOW better, and so we DO better. We all know that representation matters. It matters to readers and clients alike. When I give a reading to my clients, I want them to see themselves in my deck. That's so much easier when you have options other than straight white folks. Let's all of us do better, yeah?
After I posted a shout out for diverse decks on Facebook, I wandered over to Twitter and saw that Asali from Asali Earthworks is looking for a deck featuring QTPOC (their abbreviation, not mine) (but I'm totally using it in the future) in fairy tales! I recommended Kris Waldherr's Goddess Tarot, and said I was making a list. Asali already HAS a list. it's here, and it's great. So in the interest of having many ways to find these decks, I'm going to be posting all the decks I find and the ones that Asali found (with credit, of course) and promoting the hell out of this lady. :)
Asali also has an etsy shop where you can purchase her teas, readings and a lovely little talisman.
She also filled out the LFT Questionnaire for us so we can get to know her better.
Thanks, Asali! I'm looking forward to working more with you.
1. What you appreciate the most in your friends.
Femmes are my favorite people in the world because of how they love. They've been the most consistent people in my life-checking up, being vulnerable with me, sending me things, sharing their day and the most random facts. They're my healers.
2. Your idea of happiness.
Being able to live sustainable as a healer.
3. Your idea of misery.
Living up to other people's expectations.
4. Where would you like to live?
Some place outside a city but not too far away. A small house with a garden of herbs that I haven't mangled with my black thumb (the irony of an herbalist with a black thumb is never lost on me).
5. Your favorite colors and flowers.
Sunflowers, they are my reminder to smile. I dare anyone to look right at a sunflower in bloom and not smile even a little. Go ahead, try it sometime.
My favorite color is purple but yellow is what I turn to when I feel brightest- all credit to Oshun.
6. Your favorite poets.
I'm always sinking into Warsan Shire, as we share diasporic connections. Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha has reminded me so much of the broad love of my femme magic. More recently, I've fallen for Lettie Laughter who weaves spells out of poems about femme grief, trauma, love, and pleasure. It's also no accident that two of them are card slingers and if I find out that Warsan Shire reads tarot I'll melt out of sheer joy!
7. Your heroes/heroines in fiction.
Hermione Granger, is that even a surprise?
8. What role does divination play in your life?
It isn't understatement when I say divination saved my life. Part of the insidiousness of being mentally ill is that you lose trust in yourself, in your intuition, in the little voice that keeps you breathing through the worst of it. Divination is affirmation from the universe that I am true and what I'm seeing and feeling and needing is true. That divination often comes with guidance is a wonderful bonus.
9. Your heroes/heroines in real life.
My mother. No one else comes close. We will always have a tenuous complicated relationship and half the time we hardly understand each other but no one else has modeled strength and love for me like she has.
10. What is your present state of mind?
In lieu of an endless essay I'll submit The Hermit+The Moon as pretty accurate visual of my current state of mind.
11. What is your favorite tarot deck or divination tool?
My Daughters of the Moon Tarot ties with The Wooden Tarot for deck favorites.
12. Your favorite songs?
I'm actually horrible about picking favorite songs, books, etc so I'll go with what is currently on repeat.
Phenomenal Woman by Laura Mvula. Many Moons by Janelle Monae. Ima Read by Zebra Katz & Njena Reddd Foxxx. Oshun Chant by Women of the Calabash. Riverside by Agnes Obel.
Oh, and anything by Beyonce. I'm shameless about my position in the Beyhive.
13. What is your favorite word?
14. What is your least favorite word?
Excelsis. For some reason as a child, this word challenged my tongue to the point of nearly choking once. I hated even reading it in passing because I would always mouth along and there I was wildly trying to unstick my tongue from whatever contortion it attempted in order to pronounce this damn word.
15. What sound or noise do you love?
Thunder. I love the way the sound of thunder shakes me down to my bones and vibrates in my gut.
16. What sound or noise do you hate?
At this very moment, the sound of my cats' claws scratching the paint off my bedroom door.
17. What turns you on?
Neon purple lipstick on a black femme.
18. What turns you off?
19. What is your favorite curse word?
20. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?
“Well would you look at that, you made it!”