Here we see a sparrow shot in the chest and killed, cleanly, by ten arrows.
Sparrows represent thoughts, ideals and levity. They speak to the importance of keeping a light heart so you can fly higher. While sparrows are productive birds they are also hyper-vigalent and very protective, their safety comes from flying and moving in large numbers.
It is time to break away from the flock and find your own path. The number ten in tarot is an ending. This cycle of ideas and the direction you are walking is over, but probably not because you chose to finish but because an outside force brought you down to ground. It is possible that you have been hurt and betrayed by people close to you. Their words have wounded you and put an end to a dream you had. You feel defeated. This card is very much associated with feeling like a ‘victim’ and that you are powerless. Perhaps your reputation has also taken a hit. While it may seem that everything is dark and heavy at the moment, there is no more pain to come. This is most definitely the dark before the dawn.
Also remind yourself that although you feel powerless, you are not. Surrendering and trusting is a power – so is keeping on going. If you can, take this hit and wound with grace and trust you can rebuild without those who wounded you. This ending was very important so that in the very near future your spirit could be free to pursue something that in your heart of hearts you know is healthier for you. That said, the lessons and wisdom you have gained from walking this path will serve your future endeavors.
Also, if you look closer at the bird, it has been shot in the front, not the back like the traditional card. As such, this indicates that you knew the ending was coming even before you were attacked by those around you, you just didn’t want to face the possibility. All this tells us is how deeply embedded the ideas and beliefs were (despite the fact they were no longer serving you) and why it took the brutal force of an outside force to bring you down.
The ten of plumes is much like Death. It is a sudden and abrupt ending. In this case it is most definitely not a physical death but a death of ideas. You have exhausted all avenues of this area of development. Take time to recoup and rest, stop ruminating on these ideas, turn your attention elsewhere or even take a small break away to reset your mind and direction.
Upright: ending, betrayal, crisis of belief and thought, hurt, dark before dawn.
Reversed: surrender, letting go of hurt and loss, learning from the past but moving on to new ideas, letting go of thought patterns and beliefs that no longer serve you.