This week I will be using the Fantastic Menagerie Tarot from Magic Realist Press. Unlike most of the decks they publish, the accompanying book for this deck was actually authored by someone other than Karen Mahony and Alex Ukolov. Their original artwork is based on the illustrations of J.J. Grandville, and the book is authored by Sophie Nusslé.
I was at first rather surprised by the choice of a penguin for the King of Cups. After all, for a bird, he seems a bit of a cold fish. And of course, birds are generally associated more with the element of air than with watery cups. Nevertheless, thinking about it I changed my mind.
For one thing, the penguin is a bird that swims, rather than flies. I also notice the egg he holds in his right hand, the hand of action. In some breeds of penguin, the males keep the eggs their partners have laid warm, sometimes for months on end. And then, as well, there is the fact that penguins mate for life. So, altogether a quite nurturing, emotionally attuned figure for a male, comfortable, even graceful, in the deep waters of emotions.
I am grateful to be able to nurture others.