You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger

February 22, 2013 § 1 Comment

My Gigi read playing cards, even though occasionally she remembered she was Baptist and found the devil in them. Usually, she was what I like to call a Spiritualist. She came by it honest; the belief in inherited mystical ability and guilt run deep in my family. She learned it all from her grandmother. That just means we’re Appalachian, I think.

My mom would go to psychics when I was a kid. She and my grandmother took lots of things for omens. One time, the psychic told my mom that the kid with my birthday would make a lot of money. “Maybe she’s off on the dates,” Mom said. “She must mean Jenny.” My sister Jenny’s birthday is two weeks before mine, though she was born with a giant magnet inside her that pulls you in, while I have a small one that pulls me into myself. I’m not complaining. We are who we were born to be. Really, I agree with mom on that one. We’re both still waiting for our cash, though.

By the time I was a teenager, I had a deck of tarot cards, Rider-Waite design, the classics, which the all-knowing Internet tells me, was designed by Pamela Colman Smith, who shares my birthday. I was supposed to wrap them in a red cloth, Leigh Ann told me. The only red cloth I could find was a polyester half-slip that belonged to my mother. It would have to do.  We tried our hand at divining through the cards, but I was too impatient to study it. Maybe it had something to do with the slip? I keep going to psychics, though. Every time, I shake a little, nervous and excited about what my future might hold. Often, they knew things they cannot know, things I’ve never seen.

Last weekend, I talked to a psychic, in the corner of a local restaurant. This one was a medium—she plays the middleman between the living and the dead. According to her, my dad and grandfather were there. According to her, my iron is low. I won’t tell the other things she said, though she knew things she could not have known. She didn’t say anything about a whole lot of money, though. Some people try to figure out how she does it, where the smoke and mirrors are. I choose to believe her. I bought some iron pills.  I just figure, if life does go into some great beyond, there ought to be some kind of way to get a long distance call out there. If, as I heard on Terry Gross’s interview with a scientist in resuscitation medicine, dead is not really dead at first, who’s to say we aren’t transmitting messages  like some old radio wave, back and forth, for year and years, to those we miss and love?




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