Queen of Shovels

My dear friend Peggy is an artist.
She is a master gardener.
And she is studying to be a shaman.

Every couple of months or so we meet up with her and her husband
for dinner and lively conversation in a 200 year old basement pub in Gettysburg.
Where the original wooden gates hang over the bar, and they have a window cut in the spring house door so you can see the secret cubby hole that sheltered travelers on the underground
railroad and where we never seem to be able to order anything but the spit roasted chicken.

It was on one such evening, over the winter months I think
when the crowds of tourists, toting plastic rifles and sporting grey or blue felt wool ersatz
civil war era hats, had thinned out some and the fireplace at the end of the pub was ablaze
with good old Pennsylvania hardwood, that we got on the subject of Tarot cards.

Peg was endeavoring to explain the revelatory meaning of the cards she had drawn in a recent
foray into fortune telling. Richard was rolling his eyes and trying to catch the waitress’ attention
to order another martini. Pat, who is a Pinochle player was asking whether there were traditional suits similar to playing cards and was trying to remember what the black suits were called.
“You know, the ones that look like little shovels.”
Just as Peg was announcing that she had thrown down the Queen of something or other.

And I was in the middle of this creative confusion
happily enjoying my chicken.