Each new moon, I draw an herbal tarot card for personal revelation. This is my favorite deck because it relates and connects a card's meaning with a corresponding herb. I always seem to draw the same 10-15 cards over and over, Moon XVIII Lemon Balm being one of them. The moon is also my ruling planet so drawing this card encourages me in so many ways.
I seem to have a life-long quest to relate to the plants in deep and meaningful ways. Ingesting a plant is one method of connecting with its essence so usually I taste its leaves or make a food or drink with it, if possible. Or touch it or smell it or burn it. Or wear it. And exploring the plants in new and unique ways seems key, so this time I ate some of the lemon balm stem alone.
Lemon balm-moon water is fairly regular around here during early summer and especially when I draw this card. In case you've never made it, let me tell you that it makes a most refreshing lemony water. This is how I do it. Go before a lemon balm plant, pause for a moment as a form of connection, and hum or sing quietly as a form of gratitude while filling a jar with 4" stem tips. Add water and admire. Leave the jar outside to infuse and absorb overnight -- it doesn't have to be a full moon -- all the while appearing to be gardening so as to not scare the neighbors. The next day the water can be strained if desired, the leaves really don't interfere with drinking it though. Then place the spent leaves on the ground near the plant they came from. Or you can just infuse the water in the fridge or even on the counter at room temperature for a few hours.
The card's image on the black notebook brought to mind a white silk organza moon stitched onto black velvet from way back when. Clothwise, it's a fairly easy illustration to play with so that's exactly what I intend to do. The stone was collected from an English seaside by Lyn. A treasured stone.
Hanging herbs to dry has its drawbacks, the main one being dust. The nettles were hung on a rod over our fireplace and then I tied on a tablecloth to cover them. Dust-free. It's taken me 20 years to think of this!