The Wild Unknown Tarot - Mother of Wands


The Wand court cards are represented by snakes.

Snakes are cold blooded, they need heat from the sun to warm them up and get them going, they're also predators and strike quickly after being dormant or still for quite some time and I think these qualities fit really well with the element of Fire which flares up quickly, is volatile and burns out or dies down quickly as well.
Snakes are also a symbol of rebirth since they shed their skins and I think that fits with the Fire court too - they're adaptable and are capable of reinventing themselves to fit their circumstances.. They can be show-offs and they like to lead, they're not followers.

The Mother of Wands is depicted against an orange background. She is coiled around her eggs and a stick or wand.

When I first saw this card I thought the snake was an adder but after a bit of research I've discovered that adders don't lay eggs, they have live young so she's not an adder.

I've pulled this card a couple of times in readings and the first thing that I thought of was fierce protectiveness... The eggs are fragile and delicate and this mother has wrapped her own body around them to protect them. She's capable of striking quickly but her anger won't last, it'll be over with just as soon as it arrived.

Queens or Mothers in this deck have reached a level of maturity where they understand their element so this lady has internalised and completely understands the element of Fire. She knows what she wants and she knows how to get it, she's protective and ambitious and she's also sexy and slinky...

The Goddess Kundalini is represented by a snake... Dormant, she coils around the base chakra at the bottom of the spine when awakened with meditation and Yoga she rises through the rest of the chakras until enlightenment is reached. Those who have experienced Kundalini energy often say it feels like an electrical current and I think that too fits well with the element of Fire.

I'd love to hear from others who may know a bit more than I do about snake symbolism...


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I find this card doesn't fit with my image of the Queen of Wands. I would see this more as Cups or Pentacles. I suppose the queen of Wands is very capable of defending her own and would be very quick to defend just like a snake however I see this card as portraying a home lover, someone who is content to stay home and sit on the eggs whilst hubby goes out to earn the family crust. I see the queen of Wands as hiring someone in to sit on the eggs whilst she goes out to rule or co-rule her empire.

Water Lady

I agree, I don't see a snake as representing anything like what I know of the Q of wands, confident, guidance, inspirational.
snakes - besides the fact that I don't like them - pretty much leave their young as soon as eggs are laid. no mother figure here.


What exactly are you having problems with?

(edited to add: I think this thread is likely to be merged with the one you've linked to in the study group).


Hi Water Lady,

From your post it seems that you're having trouble with the concept of snakes representing the Fire Court..
Have you checked out this thread, it may help?
Wand Court Cards - snakes (click).

Water Lady

as I said on the site, the card does not seem to give me any wands feeling, the best I can get from this is ...guarding, selfish, protective
snakes lay eggs and leave so my head says this in not right.
and the Q of wands have meant to me - any of these - Ambition, Stubbornness, Guidance, Confidant, focused, inspiration


So from what you're saying, the Queen of Wands wouldn't be the most nurturing mother since snakes lay eggs then leave them.. That fits quite well with how I'd see the Wand Queen in a mothering role, I'd see her as fiercely protective, just as this snake is, using her own body to protect the eggs but not someone like the Pentacle Queen / Mother who is more of a home-maker and has maybe a more typical motherly image (although even she could direct her energies into business rather than her children).

Snakes are fierce, they go after what they want, they're hunters, they strike quickly and then move onto the next thing quickly - don't these all seem like very fiery / 'wandish' qualities to you?

I think what Lark has written in the thread I linked to above about snake symbolism and is very helpful.
There's also the link to the Goddess Kundalini too.. Maybe you're trying to fit the image on the card into what you think it should be..
If you're really struggling with snakes as Fire / Wand courts you could try reading about snake symbolism in general.. There are loads of websites and books about animal symbolism that may help.

Water Lady

yes, thank you that brought me some understanding, I had no knowledge of the symbolism.
I think I can see it now.

Pauline Kilar

I don't know if this will be helpful to anyone, but I had a strong, immediate emotional connection to this card.

My own mother is very much a Queen of Wands type -- charming, vivacious, and strong-willed. Ever since I started reading tarot, I have associated my mother with the Queen of Wands, and no matter what description I read in any book, it fits her to a T.

To see this card, with the mama snake guarding her babies, was healing and moving for me, because despite my mother's flaws (narcissism for one), she has always been there for her children when it counts. This card reminded me of a whole host of positive attributes in my mother that I had lost sight of. The fire, stubbornness and selfishness of the Queen of Wands can be an asset when it comes to protecting her own.

That said, she is definitely not a traditional "motherly" type as depicted by, say, the Queen of Pentacles.

I love the depth this deck adds to my study of tarot and I really treasure this card.