Standing amongst a sandy landscape in a well-dressed tunic, cloak, hat, and fringed boots, is a young man holding a large staff in the Page of Wands. Like the King and Queen of this suit, his tunic is also covered in salamanders, a symbol of fire, while the rest of his entire wardrobe is in bold hues of orange or yellow. He gazes at his staff intently, as if to say, “Well, what next?” Though he stands in a fixed position, he is ready to move on to his next adventure, to seize an ensuing opportunity, to begin a new project. Pages are the youngest players in the deck of Tarot, they are the students, appearing in our readings to show us what we have yet to learn or how we may need to grow. The Page of Wands emphasizes the beginnings of a new dawn, the spark of something – an idea, a fresh dream, a potentiality... The Page is too young to know much about fear and too brash to sit around arguing with himself about why his ideas won’t work or how his projects may be doomed to fail. He is filled with eagerness, enthusiasm, a bit of naivety perhaps, but also passion and a certain presence, a certain strength in intuitively knowing that all we really have in life is the present moment, so why not take it, fully, and with no regrets?
When we see this card in a reading, it could mean that we’ve been in a rut in some way – we’re bored or a little too comfortable or inhibited – and it’s time to make a change. The Page of Wands is all about carving out a new path, charting a different direction, and sailing unseen waters. He brings with him a dose of courage, a reminder to take the bull by the horns and dive into whatever shy passion we’ve secretly been contemplating when we thought no one else was looking. The Page of Wands WAS looking, and he is giving us permission to succumb to our deepest temptations and live out our innermost passions – we only get one life that we know of absolutely, so why not do what we love? He wants us to develop a path that is ours alone, unique, individual, and creative. He’s leaving the details up to us – we’ll have to work that out as we go along, but he’s literally lighting a fire under our rears to get us going and giving us no excuses to go after what we crave most in life.
The wildflower which most closely resembles the Page of Wands is by far Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium), a tall and showy plant that grows throughout Canada, Europe, and most of the United States, thriving in open meadows, along streams, roadsides, and forest edges, and blooming in summer with brilliant pink flowers that are hard to miss. Its common name derives from its rapid ability to colonize areas burned by fire and it also shows up in areas that are heavily overgrazed or uprooted. Traditionally the leaves were infused as a tea, and the plant was used to treat migraine headaches, insomnia, anemia, and the common cold as well as digestive complaints including gastric ulcers, colitis, dysentery, prostate, or urinary problems. Fireweed contains high concentrations of polyphenols, like red wine or chocolate, which have also received a lot of attention from the scientific community recently for their health improving properties. The polyphenols in Fireweed comprise mostly of flavonoids (including quercetin), phenolic acids, and ellagitannins which give it its immune and neuro-protective abilities. The pretty pink flowers are also edible and can be made into a jelly or jam if one has the patience to collect, clean, boil and cook them into a sweet spread with enough sugar and pectin.
When contemplating a new direction or a bold course of action, consider this powerful pairing – the Page of Wands and Fireweed will help you find a novel way of doing things, or allow you to finally explore your deepest desires without fear or hesitation weighing you down. Allow them to show you the joy that is present in a life that is based on chasing your dreams – whatever they may be!
Chey, Anne. “How To Make Fireweed Jelly.” Farmhouse and Blooms, 13 July 2021. https://farmhouseandblooms.com/how-to-make-fireweed-jelly/
Geer, Mary K. Tarot for Your Self: A Workbook for the Inward Journey, 2nd Edition. New Jersey, The Career Press, Inc, 2002. P271
Igor A. Schepetkin, Igor A, Ramstead, Andrew G, Kirpotina, Liliya, N, et al. “Therapeutic Potential of Polyphenols from Epilobium angustifolium (Fireweed).” National Center for Biotechnology Information, 24 May 2016. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5045895/
Mionczynski, John. “Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium).” Native Memory Project, retrieved 18 July 2023. https://nativememoryproject.org/plant/fireweed/