Queer Tarotscopes for Cancer Season 2021: Where Do You Feel Ready to Break Free?

This season’s tarotscopes feature The Next World Tarot and the Compendium of Constellations.

After the focused, energizing fire of Aries, after the grounded movement of Taurus, after the expansive information-gathering with Gemini, we come to our first water season of this new astrological year with Cancer. And while we are in the midst of another eclipse season, with Mercury and Jupiter both stationed retrograde, Cancer season still ushers in the summertime, urging us to slow down, be present, and honor the experiences that we are having — whatever they may be. In this time of water, we’re offered a chance to be soft, to be aware of what is happening internally. We’re granted the gift of space.

Ruled by the moon, Cancer is usually associated with strong boundaries, intense emotions, and a powerful sense of privacy. Sensitive, emotional, and incredibly intuitive, Cancer is a sign that wants us to turn our gaze inward, and to honor whatever feelings are bubbling up or boiling over. And after the rapid movement and endless exploration of Gemini, after soaring and spinning through clear skies and storm clouds, Cancer wants to pull us back down into the depths. The shift between these seasons asks us to find balance between intellectual pursuits, the perceptions of our minds, and the rich, hidden complexities of our hearts.

Cancer’s birth card, the Chariot, is one that seems to contradict itself. Rapid movement and careful consideration, following the established path yet leveling up to take a new chance: the Chariot explores what it means to push past our own limits and find victory, success, and personal power in moving beyond all that we have already known. Cancer may be known for its homebody energy, a desire to stay safe and protected, but they also know how to follow their hearts — and we see that ability to push and grow displayed beautifully within this archetype. At its core, the Chariot asks us to explore our relationship with protection. How do we keep ourselves safe while still allowing ourselves to grow and evolve? What kinds of joyful freedom did you discover with Gemini, that you can pull forward into a more consistent practice? What have we learned from the things we have endured, and how brave will we be about the things that remain unknown? This archetype helps us identify the essential boundaries that we still cherish, and consider which ones we are ready to release. Where do you feel constrained, eager to break free? Where are you ready to blaze trails, to explore, to leave the safety of the path behind — and where do you still crave stability? How do you name and understand your goals, and what do you need in order to pursue them?

Sevens in the tarot reflect this conflicted nature, making space for celebration while also recognizing how much more work there is to do. Just as the Chariot wants to balance exploration with safety, sevens offer insights into how we can continue to make sustainable progress. Dreaming of possible destinies, assessing whether we are still on track to meet our goals, standing up for our brightest ambitions, protecting ourselves from potential betrayals — all four minor arcana sevens speak to different aspects of the Chariot, and can help us understand this archetype more thoroughly. What visions do you have for your future? How are you ready to take some calculated risks? Where are you willing to be tender, and what is activating your fiercest impulses?

Many of our cards for this season ask us to consider the ways that we move, and the things that motivate our movement. Are you intentionally pulling back, or are you rushing forward with purpose? Do you know what your goal is, or are you still scrambling to find a sense of where you want to be? In this season of Cancer, honor your successes, the value of taking thoughtful risks, even as you acknowledge any new journeys that you are embarking on. Experienced tarot readers or astrologers can plug the cards I’ve drawn for their sun, moon, and rising signs into the spread below to create a custom reading for this season. Since Cancer is ruled by the moon, pay special attention to your card for this placement, and consider how you can intentionally work with this energy over the coming season.

The tarot spread for cancer season: Plug in the cards referenced in my cancer tarotscopes for a complete picture of your season. Rising: I project; Sun: I am; Moon: I feel

I’m still open for custom tarot readings, so head to my website to book your personal reading with me. I’ve also published a single-card study on the Fool, part of an ongoing series, and am working on my first class exploring tarot and numerology. Check out my daily writing and card draws on Instagram, and you can get my latest tarot writings and updates delivered straight to your inbox by signing up for my newsletter. Lastly, head to my website for larger spreads, writings, and to purchase my four original e-books for learning tarot.

As always with these tarot readings, take what you need and leave what you don’t. Happy Cancer season!


The card for Aries as well as the card for the Nine of Wands

Nine of wands

This season, your natural sense of fire may feel even more amplified than usual, Aries, as you put everything you have into reaching that next big goal. And as magical and incredible as it can be to be able to see the finish line, as intoxicating as intense movement can feel, take care to pay attention to how many resources you’re burning through. Where are you feeling a bit overextended, a bit exhausted? What fears are starting to creep around the edges of your consciousness, and how can you address them instead of trying to ignore them?

Cancer season has so much to teach us about the ways that care for ourselves, the boundaries of protection that we establish. You are strong and resilient, brilliant and capable, and this season may find ways to remind you of all the magic that you possess. But boundaries aren’t only meant to keep people from taking advantage of us — they also can protect us from our own impulses, or remind us to stay safe and thoughtful even when we’re taking risks. How can you balance perseverance with pleasure? What can you do to keep yourself grounded, even in these last stages of movement?


The Taurus constellation card and Hermit tarot card

The Hermit

After the quick movement and endless collaboration of Gemini, you might be delighted to slow down, focus on yourself, and step back from the daily grind. For you, Cancer season offers chances to recalibrate, to check in with your most hidden depths, to perhaps take a break from your regular routines to evaluate what is and isn’t working. Have you been feeling burned out, or energized? Are you excited about the structures and patterns that you’ve established, or have you been feeling limited, frustrated? What comes forward when you start to explore your own shadows? The Hermit guides us through secrets and mysteries, giving us the time and space to interrogate what we really want and need, and where we’ve been going through the motions. Sometimes that means stepping back from daily routines, unplugging from technology, or simply giving yourself a day away from work to focus on your heart and spirit. How have you been caring for yourself? What could a bit of solitude do for your state of mind? Where could you be more gentle with yourself, and where do you need a reality check?


The Gemini constellation card and Knight of Swords tarot card

Knight of swords

In all of the excitement and joy of your season, it’s very possible that you stumbled onto an idea, insight, truth, or perception that has filled you with energy and enthusiasm. And in rushing towards that new goal, in exploring and examining and expanding, it may feel like every ounce of energy and ingenuity you possess is being poured into that intention. This isn’t a bad thing! You are someone that is so good at experimenting and playing, that knows just how hard to push and understands the magic of bringing in other people or methods so that the building never has to stop. However, as we move into this new season of water and depths, you may find yourself getting a bit more fixated than usual, perhaps getting lost in your own tunnel vision and reluctant to let other perspectives in. You may even be using this new idea to escape from an old, stale journey, giving yourself an out so that you don’t have to finish up properly. Rather than refusing to look around, be intentional about slowing down, taking in other opinions or ideas, and working in harmony with those around you. Where might other viewpoints help you grow? Who have you been refusing to let in?


The Cancer constellation card and Death tarot card


Happy birthday, Cancer! As we move into your season of sensitivity and careful movement, consider what you are moving away from as much as what you are moving towards. This may be a time of letting go: saying goodbye to an old dream, relationship, job, ambition, or community, and instead choosing to follow a new path. Sometimes this card is as simple as the death of the ego, admitting that something isn’t working or that you need to abandon an old pathway and move in a new direction. There’s sometimes grief, sometimes relief, sometimes even a rich and joyful sense of freedom in this particular kind of movement — and as good as you are at protecting your heart, try not to isolate yourself too thoroughly. Death is an experience that we all must endure, for better or worse, so be intentional about letting others into your process, about accepting support and help and love from those that are aware of what you are going through. How can you care for yourself through this transition? What are you allowing yourself to receive from others?


The Leo constellation card and Knight of Cups tarot card

Knight of cups

While your natural fire tends to catapult you into the spotlight, and your natural streak of independence can help you keep your standards high, you may find yourself considering your partnerships, communities, and relationships through a particularly dreamy lens this season. And while there’s nothing wrong with craving companionship or seeing people through rose-colored glasses, don’t lose yourself in pursuit of a particular wish or dream. Where are you getting swept up in an idealistic view of the world, and how is it serving you? There’s magic and power in allowing yourself to be generous and romantic, in seeing the best of people, in hoping that everything will all work out beautifully — but don’t get so lost in fantasies that you can’t see reality when it’s right in front of you.

What stories have you been telling yourself about who you are, what you crave, what has happened to you and what you yourself have done? What do you know about what or who you want, and how do those understandings impact the choices that you make?


The Virgo constellation card and 5 of Pentacles tarot card

Five of pentacles

You may find yourself wanting this season, looking for a sense of stability or support that you aren’t quite able to find. And whether that’s due to real circumstances or you find yourself getting caught up in a scarcity mindset, this could be a season of challenges, as new obstacles emerge or a feeling of turmoil leaves you feeling stuck.

Sweet Virgo, you get a lot of shit for being a perfectionist — but in this case, it might be causing you to refuse help that you really need, simply because it doesn’t look the way that you want it to. How are you making things hard on yourself? Where could you take advantage of the resources and assistance that are right at your fingertips? Don’t minimize what you may be dealing with, but also don’t force yourself to endure hardship alone. Who wants to help you? Where is aid being extended? How can you allow your community to care for you, to lift you up, to hold you close and give you the things that you need in order to survive?


The Libra constellation card and the 6 of Swords tarot card

Six of swords

Our birth card for this season, the Chariot, speaks of both movement and protective boundaries — and in this case, you are doing both, moving out of the grip of something that has been harming you or holding you back. You’re doing the brave thing, the hard thing, so give yourself credit for this work, and try not to minimize the effort you’re putting in. As empowering and joyful as progress can be, sometimes there’s a bit of a sting to it, a bit of tenderness that needs care. Even as you move forward, even as you set new boundaries and put yourself first, be gentle with those tender bits. It’s okay to move slowly, to be kind to yourself, to not push harder than you’re ready to. How can you ask for support in this time? What can you do to attend to your needs, to treat yourself with softness, to acknowledge all that you are leaving behind even as you fix your gaze forward?


The Scorpio constellation card and Justice tarot card


This is a season that is calling you to balance, Scorpio — something that with all of your depths and intensity, you are not always known for. Justice itself is a complicated term, as the ideals that we hold often get twisted or blurred when we put them into practice. Yet in holding ourselves to certain standards, in recognizing where we live up to our ideals and where we fall short, we can grow and evolve in real time, finding new ways to protect ourselves and our communities. And this season, you may find opportunities for your personal values to be more adequately expressed in your world. What do you believe deeply, truly, passionately, and how do you see those beliefs get expressed in your work, play, relationships, solitude, ambitions, dreams, fears? What agendas are you furthering? Who or what do you fight for? How do you amplify the voices of those that are often silenced? How do the things you want play out in reality, and how do you balance hope with truth?

While this is a big concept, we can be attentive to justice in both major and minor decisions. How can you practice conscious awareness when you make choices, open doors, or leave things behind? How do you understand fairness? What does integrity mean to you, and how does that manifest in your daily actions?


The Sagittarius constellation card and Magician tarot card

The Magician

You may find yourself preparing to begin a massive new project or adventure, and the magic and anticipation of this movement can be intoxicating. Give yourself permission to settle into that joy, Sagittarius, to honor the power in this moment. As you sit on the precipice of a new journey, take stock of all that you have at your disposal. Who is on your team, and who is cheering you on from the sidelines? What resources do you already possess, and which do you have access to? How clear is your destination, and what alternative paths can you imagine to get to that same objective? What do you need to learn, to gather, to understand? The Magician is an archetype of confidence, of courage, of knowing that absolutely anything is not just possible but within reach — you simply have to be brave enough, strong enough, to grab at it with both hands. And even if you don’t have all of the answers yet, remember that you yourself are wildly adaptable, creative, able to ask questions and solve problems in ways that empower you to reach new heights of brilliance. How can you set yourself up for success?


The Capricorn constellation card and King of Cups tarot card

King of cups

Dear Capricorn, you’re not someone that’s typically recognized for your tenderness, your kindness, your sense of compassion — like many of the kings of the tarot, you understand how to set boundaries, and where to put your energy. But the king of cups is a little different, in that this is a ruler who leads from the heart, who extends empathy, who isn’t afraid to be vulnerable. As we step into Cancer season, you may find yourself challenged to be gentle, both with those around you and more importantly, with yourself. How can you make space for grace? How much room do you give yourself for exploration and introspection? Instead of pushing forward to the next goal, how can you find contentment and pleasure in showing yourself warmth?

There can be such strength in softness, and you may find that the way to reach your goals and impact your community is not through pragmatic earth or raging fire but instead through swimming through the depths, opening yourself up to grace, honoring any emotions that you’ve been working to suppress. What personal or emotional needs have you been denying? What generosity can you receive from those that love you? How could connecting with your community help you understand your own self more fully?


The Aquarius constellation card and Eight of Wands tarot card

Eight of wands

It may feel like your work and play are moving at the speed of light this season, as obstacles fall to the wayside and energy feels boundless. And after the care and intention of last season, after spending so much time organizing the resources that you have and considering what you still may need, this may feel like a rush of passion and joy, a chance to let loose and throw everything that you have into those big, brilliant goals. Take advantage of all of those green lights and open doors and get moving! If you’ve been waiting for a sign, if you’ve been hesitating or trying to find a more subtle way of pursuing what you want, this is the time to leave any fears behind and take direct, pointed action. What are you ready to put your whole self into? What dreams are you chasing? How can you follow the path you’ve already established and make real, measurable progress?


the Pisces constellation card and 3 of Pentacles tarot card

Three of pentacles

Whatever you’ve been thoughtfully building will continue to find growth and magic this season, as resources become readily available and you find joy in each stage of the process. As we move into this new season of water, allow yourself to explore and dream about what might help you take your work to the next level. What kinds of teammates, collaborations, ideas, insights, or assets would help you grow more fully? Who do you trust with your vision, and how can you allow your perspective to expand?

Your creativity, your ability to dream, your powerful sensitivity and expansive intuition are often the pieces of you that get called out or celebrated the most frequently — yet you also possess an innate wisdom, one that can empower you to know what is best for you and your work. Hold firm to your vision even as you allow others into your process, and you can combine that brilliant flexibility with the resources you need to thrive. What are you ready to unlock within yourself? How can you keep growing?

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Meg is a freelance photographer, writer, and tarot reader living in New York City.

Meg has written 103 articles for us.