I hook thumbs into pockets of my canvas coat as if pressure in the furry lining might soften the tension between us. Footsteps clatter over anxious notes and I tune to silence for fear of saying anything that might bang too hard on the wrong drum. You ask about boundaries. I reply with nonchalance because I don’t want to care too much or too little. You express experiencing disrespect while trying to respect me. The nuance of newness contains a curve, a couple conflicts, curtains pulled back to reveal light shining on another way to be human. My eyes adjust to the rays, reorient with courage to care a different way. A loud machine whirs nearby. You tense and I pull hands from pockets to cover your ears. A giggle. Ease.

Care-taking doesn’t have to take a serious somber stance. Gentleness isn’t gentle when laced with hyper-vigilance and constant questions about whether you’re wrong or right. Sometimes the smallest sweets crystallize contentment. Shadows dancing on stucco walls. The safety of a silk scarf resting around your neck. A phone screen lighting up and the rhythm of your heart reacting. A flood of feeling when you open the door to the interdependence of experience. If space is not cleared, how can it be filled?

We’re dressed to the nines this week with a series of endings slickly restyled into the source of fresh starts. The IX of Cups harnesses Venusian splendor and Jupiter’s wisdom under willingness to not know everything. It is a cosmic upgrade to Neptunian dreams experienced via sensations better off incomplete, left with area for play and just enough sensory deprivation to wonder ourselves into a room for recess. So our longing puts us on the precipice of being filled. So our wishing puts us in a position to be wanted by what we wish for. The IX of Cups is a nod to being nice and full of fertile fancies among bitter breaks to the ice. As cups are emptied at the tea party this week, let knees weaken and lean into longing enough to lick it from your lips.