Drop a bell off of the dock.
Blot it out in the sea.
Drowning mute as a rock;
and sounding mutiny.
Joanna Newsom, “Sawdust & Diamonds” (Ys, 2006)
A girl in a pink cloak leans down over the edge of a dock, dropped a gold bell. Behind her there is an upward-opening crescent moon and the towers and steeples of a city. In the water below, the girl, the bell, and the city are reflected. In the reflection, pink flames shoot out of the windows and towers. The girl’s reflection is the same shade of pink. The reflected crescent moon is on top of her head. She holds out her right hand to catch the bell and holds up a small gold key in her left hand.
The Two of Cups shows the princess of Ys sneaking out to the dock by night. Her reflection, holding the key to the gates, foreshadows the downfall of the city. The bell dropped into the sea is a covenant with this shadow-self. This card is about alliances, especially secret ones, and more generally things that are suppressed and hidden. It can signify a fateful meeting with another, or a look at one’s own reflection.
This card links to the Nine of Cups, where the vision in the water comes to pass.