|©Bayless & Battersby|
A female figure stands, watering can at her feet, tending a vine that curves up and around a stake in the ground. The vine is one of three we can clearly see, with a fourth implied by a further stake. Each vine appears to have two big yellow fruits/coins, one at the base and one further up the plant. They appear too heavy to be held up by such a flimsy vine, the first biological improbability. Secondly, the vines also have pink flowers in bloom, rather unusual in a plant with ripe fruit on it. There is a further fruit/coin (bringing us up to seven) in a basket between the rows of stakes, suggesting that it is time to harvest.
It's funny, because I normally associate the Seven of Pentacles with still having plenty of work to do before we can reap the fruits of our labour, rather than with harvest time. And yet, this woman is still tending the vines, despite their bounty of coins. It's also true that, even once we have picked fruit (an often back-breaking job, in itself), our work is not yet over. At the very least, we have to carry the harvest home and wash it. Sometimes, we may cook or preserve it in some fashion. So, I guess I can still see the idea of needing to put in time and effort before being able to enjoy the rewards these bring. And the card also speaks of the work already put in, the time already waited. In that sense, it allows us to speak of either/both the past and future, an interesting option...
My eye is drawn to the shoot which curls around the woman's arm, almost as though the vine is laying claim to her. This is probably true: what we put energy into is ours in some ways, and yet we are also possessed by the things that we nurture.
What have you been tending? What harvest do you hope to reap? What do you still need to do? What price do you pay, besides the work you put in?