Nine of Coils
Five of Spikes
XIV Quench Five of Coils
Madrone of Spikes
Seven of Spikes
III The Forge Two of Spikes
Three of Blades
XVII The Star Star Spread
The Three Star Spread is based on this picture. One woman stands on iron ore and watches a basket star swimming in the sea. Another woman stands on fossil crinoids (relatives of the sea star) and watches a falling iron meteor. Each woman tries to attract the other's attention, though they do not look at each other. A single glowing eye unites the women, their visions, and the ground they stand on.

This layout is used to clarify a relationship between two people. Odd numbers represent one person, even numbers represent the other. Card 9 unites the two. Try reading both sides for each person. The spread can also be read for one person: Odd numbers represent what you think and do in the world and how others see you. Even numbers represent the subconscious, the imagination, and how you see yourself. Card 9 balances the two.

Cards 1&2: The ground that each person stands on: home and work, responsibilities, and the past as it affects the current situation.
Cards 3&4: Each person now: priorities, self image, role in life or in the relationship.
Cards 5&6: What each person is looking at next and/or wants the other person to see.
Cards 7&8: Division: an inner obstacle or outside interference.
Card 9: Point of connection or reconciliation.

Three of Blades: Masked shrikes with hooked beaks wield broken thorns. A trident flashes three sharp words, breaking a trefoil mirror that becomes a window on the night rain that dispels fears, false symbols, and illusions.
Five of Spikes: Cut nails strike a flint fossil sea urchin, but no fire is born - the nails must be polished free of firescale and the weathered flint must be broken to reveal the fresh spark-producing black core. The creative spark gutters only in the wind of fear that it will catch fire and burn.
Two of Spikes: An Eyed Click Beetle watches between torches that burn smoldering incense and flaming scented oil. Its real eyes are hidden and the obvious patterned ones are false - or a mask. The view is of two worlds at once, a choice between equally powerful opposites.
Nine of Coils: A chain of double links and coiled charms holds a shaman's mirror for seeing helping spirits and finding lost souls. It hangs from a triskele that was offered to the sacred well - a wish fulfilled, a responsibility accepted, and balance achieved.
Five of Coils: A broken high-carbon steel chain of brittle stars surrounds a living brittle star with a broken arm. This steel shatters if quenched, and must be cooled in sand for strength. When something feels too fragile to work with, stress must be relieved slowly. Before giving up or remaking what is broken, touch the wisdom in the break.
Seven of Spikes: A stag beetle and tiny iron antlers shaped like those of the extinct Pleistocene Giant Deer (Megaloceros) crown a shaman's hair comb ornament. Carbon antler fungi (Xylaria hypoxylon) are like ashy burnt antlers. One who accepts initiation enters the wild land to confront and claim power.
III - The Forge (The Empress): The forge is a pomegranate filled with fiery seeds of life, the inexhaustible womb of creativity, a comfort and a challenge that draws the smith back again and again. With each piece of iron it heats, the world is new.
XIV - Quench (Temperance): A newly-forged bowl is quenched in icy water, creating steam that cracks and melts icicles. Quenching cools and hardens the metal and declares its shape perfect: a healer's bowl for holding cool herb-scented water, protecting precious crystals, or burning incense or scribbled paper.
Madrone of Spikes: Water of Fire. Her lightning rod forms a fulgurite, a tube of lighting-sintered sand. Her body is a madrone tree that shelters a spadefoot toad. She drops toad eggs and tadpoles into desert rain pools. She is the shower of sparks that inspires a new project or relationship, and the soothing reassurance that allows it to grow.

Online Free Reading from the Ironwing Tarot by Lorena Babcock Moore.

Ironwing Tarot

All artwork, electronic images, and text are copyright ©2001-2004 by Lorena Babcock Moore. Script copyright ©2004 by Daniel Moore.