To the left is the Ace of Swords from the The Goddess Tarot. This could be the Excalibur card, couldn't it? A sword has been driven into the ground and awaits the right person to come along and pull it back out again. That's one way to view it, anyway. But keep reading to see another take on this card. Note that there are pyramids in the background, the land seems dry and cracked, and this sword sticks out from the parched land slightly askew. There's an ankh on the sword. In the Goddess Tarot, the suit of swords is given an ancient Egyptian theme.
Let's break this card down. To me, this card says that someone has come home, or perhaps has just woken up, to see what has become of their land. This person has thrust her sword into the ground and has sworn, "As God as my witness, I shall never eat carrots again!" Okay, bear with me. What I mean is that she's had it with the desolation and is bent on changing things. By thrusting her sword into the ground she is making her stand. The sword is askew, suggesting movement--forward hopefully. The ankh is an ancient symbol for life. Consider that a sword bearing the symbol of life has been "planted" in desolate land. The owner of this sword is planting new things, new life.
If you go back to the Excalibur analogy, one might see this card as a hint from the tarot to take new action. But this will all fall into place during an actual reading. You may draw this card for three different people and see it three different ways. (To the right is the Ace of Swords from the Hanson Roberts Tarot, notice how different it is compared to the other?)
Traditionally, swords represent thought, action, and logic. Aces represent newness and/or youth. So the Ace of Swords could be seen as representing new action.
When I reverse the card, it appears to me as if this sword is piercing the land. You may see it differently, it's just what I see. It doesn't matter what I see, all that matters is what you interpret. To me, when the card is reversed, the swords is like a thorn. It's as if there is a problem with things moving because of this thorn. A kink in the works, so to speak, and a rather problematic one. To me, this card reversed could represent interference or someone purposefully trying to cause pain or problems. To me, this card looks like pain when it is upside down. The words "beam in thine own eye" flutter through my head.
A word on reversals, it's important to learn them, but you don't have to read reversed cards. I don't. But getting to know reversals is important because sometimes you will draw a card in a reading and you'll just know that its negative aspects are what are going to apply in the reading. But we'll get to that later on.