The Ace of Cups is purported to provide a positive omen that predicts happiness and joy in every area of life, including love. The suit of Cups deals with emotions and like all aces, the Ace of Cups ushers in a fresh start that leaves the past behind and enhances what is new. However, most of us who know the story of Catherine of Aragon, who have borne witness to the demise of Dianna Spencer’s ‘fairy tale marriage’, have long given up on the ‘happy ever after’ stories promoted by famous Fairy Tales.
Hazel Susan Hawke, AO was the first wife of Bob Hawke, the 23rd Prime Minister of Australia.
Hazel Masterson was born in Perth in 1929. She met Robert James Lee (Bob) Hawke through their church activities – she was secretary of the Congregational Youth Fellowship, he was president. At Oxford University, she typed his thesis while he wrote it. This was a division of labour that persisted through their marriage – Mrs Hawke was a behind-the-scenes manager while Hawke was in the limelight.
In 1956, when they married and moved to Canberra, Mrs Hawke worked at the Indian High Commission. They lived in Melbourne from 1958 to 1983, where she raised their 3 children, often on her own as Hawke built his career through hard work, long hours and the development of many political and professional networks. Mrs Hawke also worked as a welfare volunteer at Melbourne’s Brotherhood of St Laurence and, for 2 years, studied for a Diploma of Welfare Studies.
Remarkable in her own right, when her husband became Prime Minister, Mrs Hawke influenced policy and actively advocated for issues she was passionate about. As prime ministerial spouse, Mrs Hawke enjoyed her time at The Lodge (1983–91). Mrs Hawke was patron of many welfare, education, arts, and environmental organisations. Most notable during her 8 years at The Lodge was her work for the Australiana Fund and her sympathetic restoration of the building’s interior. The Australiana Fund, started by Tamie Fraser, used donations to collect Australian art and furniture for the 4 official residences – Government House and The Lodge in Canberra, and Admiralty House and Kirribilli House in Sydney.
When Hawke resigned his parliamentary seat on 20 February 1992, Caucus moved a motion acknowledging not only his years of leadership, but also Mrs Hawke’s contribution to the party and to the nation. That year, the Hawkes moved to Sydney to live, planning extensive renovations to the harbourside home they had bought to replace their much-loved official residence in Sydney, Kirribilli House.
For all intents and purposes this reads like the perfect love story but is there such a thing? The Tarot of the Sweet Twilight doesn’t shy away from the turbulence that is so often associated with matters of the heart. In the case of the Hawkes, it was widely known that, while the Prime Minister may have given up the grog, he had certainly not stopped having extramarital sex with multiple lovers.
Gossip about him being a sex addict was one thing, but when the news emerged in 1995 that Hawke was leaving his wife — and the mother of his children — to marry a woman he had been having an affair with for twenty years it was one of the biggest scandals in Australian political history.
The public was outraged in 1991 that the beloved, larrikin prime minster was leaving the good wife of 38 years to marry a woman 14 years his junior. It triggered a media storm, with the press camping outside his lover’s home, chasing her down the street and publishing cartoons.
Perhaps it was Hawke’s long standing lover who pulled the traditional Ace of Cups for their union endured until his death and she has written a biography and tours the country giving talks about their ‘great love’.
By contrast, in 2003 Mrs Hawke revealed that she was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. With Alzheimer’s Australia, she established the Hazel Hawke Alzheimer’s Research and Care Fund for research into the disease and support for sufferers, their families and carers. She died from the complications of dementia at the age of 83.