The Wild Unknown: Death

The 13th card in The Wild Unknown tarot is Death.


Creator’s Keywords: Closure, Transformation

The Death card features a very simple and stark image – a skeleton of a decomposing baby bird, it’s white feathers lying against a black background. It really doesn’t require much description. This bird is dead, not coming back. This speaks to death being inevitable – it happens to everything and everyone. There is no escaping it. Everything and everyone continues to age… we age and move closer to death from the moment we are born.

This card is entirely black and white, giving an inherent harshness, which is what we typically think of death as – harsh. But the truth is death is not harsh. It appears that way to us because we are scared of what we cannot control or understand. Death is a transformation of sorts. It is an indiscriminate sweeping force that holds an impersonal quality – regardless of all our differences, for all the strange and unique life forms in this world, we will all eventually meet death.

According to the creator:

“No one loves the sight of the Death card in a reading. We spend most of our lives denying death altogether… so when this card appears, it’s easy to get frightened or think it’s “bad.” Don’t let the drama distract you from the message something in your life needs to end. It needs closure. This will happen voluntarily or involuntarily. Either way, you will feel a positive transformation begin after the initial forms of suffering have passed.”

When this card comes up in a reading, it means so much more than literal physical death. It often means that some situations in our lives are at a critical point – relationships decay, friendships dissolves, careers end… sometimes we choose our ending, but often they are forced upon us. No amount of hoping, praying and will power will counteract the force of death. There is something to be said for embracing the closure. Inviting transformation.

This is one post in a series about The Wild Unknown tarot deck. Click here for a list of all the other cards in the deck detailed like this one.