Thank all the Goddesses we're finally out of Mercury Rx shadow period and on to smoother, better, and generally less Aries time. Ah, don't bristle Ram readers, I love Aries to a fault, but even I have my limits. Besides, it's Taurus season, and I'm about it. Let's celebrate every single day that's above 65 degrees with park dates and picnic spreads boosting at least three different types of cheese and a smoked meat someone's grandma snuck into this country the old-fashioned way. Pump up the jams, pump 'em up, I want every good feeling amplified.
Speaking of good feelings, how about the great big passionate moon? Wasn't she striking? A sacred night. Did you feel your heart flood with a grand reverence for love's larger mystery? Yes, I know that the Scorpio full moon this past weekend wasn't easy on all of us, but I promise you it was a blessing. Think of the Michelle Wolf comedy act at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner as the perfect example of Taurus Sun, Scorpio Moon energy: When a woman takes the myriad cruelties and injustices committed by our media and fashions them into throwing knives in the shape of jokes, no fucks given. For those of you who wound up facing some difficult truths and are still reeling, be proud of yourselves. It's not easy to move forward into the light but we, like plants, depend on it to grow.
The planets are up to their old tricks, Mars retrograde in Aquarius is as innovative as it is erratic and unpredictable and some of us are charged with minding our business and approaching conflict with empathic intention. Uranus is getting comfortable in Taurus, and I'm hoping that means we're walking toward an environmental protection uprising that upholds Indigenous efforts and gets Flint sustainable water. Hey, a girl can dream. I mean, we all know it's Taurus season, but let me just say, it's hella Taurus season. Stay tuned for the new moon that warmly demands our personal best, and a Mercury transit that won't give you up, let you down, or run around and desert you. The cherry on the cake, which is flourless chocolate lava cake because, once again, Taurus season, is the upcoming Jupiter Neptune trine. Full of generosity, connection, and glimmers of faith, it's a glittering organic maraschino, dark red to match the sensuous mood.
For almost a decade, while some of your peers might have reclined into the easy life, you’ve been breaking the spells that outer structures of culturally dominant ideologies have had over you. Sure, you might have been raised to want what everyone else wants: security, accolades, a marked sense of accomplishment represented with various acceptable ceremonies and titles. But, when you were pushed to choose between what felt real and authentic to you and what felt acceptable and recommended, you understood that the choice was no choice at all. Uranus was a crown over you, instilling a desire to engage this world on radical new terms. And, no matter who you are, reader, or where you are on the journey of your life, I want to say that you have done it. Over and over, you have made your own clearing in the woods, paved your own path, and, in doing so, cleared the way for those who come after you.
As Chiron makes his way into your orbit, it’s time to ready yourself again. It’s true that you will never stop rebelling against the status quo, but Uranus is moving on to Taurus, and you have a new challenge at hand. Uranus asked you to find out who you are to this world, Chiron wants to know who you are to yourself.
The journey toward oneself is a not an easy one, and it rarely has an endpoint, you are at a precipice now, a beginning. There’s no shortage of philosophers and spiritual leaders who have written tomes on what “the self” is. I encourage you not to read any of that, no matter how hungry you get for wisdom. Your challenge, my love, is to mine yourself for the wisdom you carry. Look again at the vulnerable places where you’ve failed, what emotional wounds were you courting and reifying? Aries, this is a sacred battlefield and what you refuse to see will have the advantage. Your challenge—and you must accept it—is to make of your inner life a study. Start now.
Happy birthday, Taurus, you made it another year—and it was no small task. On the other side of your labor, finally resting in the lush indulgence of your season, the full moon that busts this month open isn’t pulling any punches when it comes to your heart. Scorpio is your direct opposite on the wheel and so has a strong power over you. To feel what you refuse to admit you feel, to claim your power by becoming fearless in the face of your own vulnerability, that is your challenge.
With Uranus pulling into your orbit and a new moon in Taurus this month, I encourage to review your goals. There’s no one with eyes and ears who doesn’t know how hard you’ve worked to get to where you are now, even if where you are doesn’t feel so far it all. Look again, Taurus, you’re practically living a second life. Who are these people who surround you and depend on your generous friendship? You have learned that your time, your love, is a jewel and it can’t be loaned out to just anyone. You have, after so much digging, struck in yourself a fertile core that—if broken open—promises to be a fount of life and nurturance.
Uranus in Taurus knows you’ve got a lot offer, but this god wants to know what you’re willing to protect. Uranus in Taurus is interested in the securing of resources, your own and your communities. Financial stakes can run high, so it’s up to you to figure out how to invest wisely and well. Rethink the meaning of currency, rethink the meaning of wealth, look again at the net you’ve been sewing beneath your tightrope. Who is holding it? Who do you trust? Who do you want to build something entirely new with? It’s time.
Your birthday month might not be here yet, but Venus is in Gemini until May 19, and if you play your cards right, you’ll be feeling like you’re the birthday girl all month long. That’s because there’s a charm lent to your days, a glimmer that attracts the eye of potential suitors and sweetens the connections you’re building with those you already adore.
There’s a lot of new energy swirling around you, and it’s good to think about the energy of the asteroid Pallas Athene and how it might be affecting you. Pallas Athene is concerned with strategy and wisdom, she is the goddess of war and the provider of wisdom. I wasn’t sure about using “provider,” and I looked up a synonym—but the online thesaurus won’t let me get away from the terms “breadwinner” and “man-of-the-house.” Pallas Athene acknowledges no man of her house. She is the leader of men, the toppler of houses, and, as Audre Lorde once wrote of her own sacred will to live, “deliberate and afraid of nothing.” Consider your own deliberations then, the places where recent upheaval presents the opportunity for restructuring and reclaiming. Consider the strategy of your communications, the messages you send and receive to be known and to know more.
With Mercury in Taurus, you might be tempted to do something silly like limit yourself. You might decide that who you are today is who you’ll always be. In doing so, you’ll risk cutting off all your past/future parallel lives, which thrive and extend in both directions! That’s why it’s so lovely to see Pallas Athene beside you, reminding you that a goddess that honors her missteps (look up the mythology of her name) is a goddess that is ready to do real battle. Ay, but May isn’t all verbal chess and the mapping of disaster. It’s also butterflies, buds bursting, and books falling open to reveal the names of the ones who have always loved you. Drink sweet nectar whenever you get the chance, it isn’t infinite.
In preparation for Venus entering your sign at the end of this month, and in reverence to both the Scorpio full moon that opened this month as well as the Taurus new moon that will charge you mid-month, I want you to spend a good deal of time in the next few weeks asking in what ways do you keep yourself from what gives you pleasure. I’m talking about the kind of deep enduring gladness that sparks you toe to fingertip, runs through your veins and winds softly around your heart. I’m talking about the kind of pleasure that reminds you who you are, so vibrantly, it recharges your power of self-actualization. I’m talking about whatever barricades you built in the name of self-protection that have inevitably barricaded you from eros.
When I say eros, I mean the erotic which exists inside the ordinary. I mean the way our skin salts, an animal sleeping noisily in your lap, the thickness of a magnolia petal between your forefinger and your thumb, stroking. And, when I say eros, I mean Eros, the god of love, who moonlights as the god of risk. Don’t you know by now he’s got your number? Not to mention, when Venus enters Cancer on May 19, she’ll be calling Eros in. Cancer, I want you to have it all. But, you can’t receive this kind of sweetness through a fortress.
A boundary should empower you to show up as your most authentic self, it’s not a form of punishment. Punishment, it appears, teaches few lessons to those who hurt us since so many of us have been raised to believe punishment is a part of love. You might control how much care and energy you’re willing to expend, you have no control over what results from your absence. Contrary to every instinct you might have, there’s no one who gets what they want by withholding it. In that sort of game, everyone loses—especially you. This month, I challenge you to find a new game, Cancer, get out of that shuttered tower and come play in the grass. If you want something, go out and get it.
Let me tell you about Ceres, the asteroid who’s hanging out in your sign. A dwarf planet, Ceres rules agriculture, transitions (seasonal, hormonal, cyclical), and whatever inside us compels nurturance. When Ceres is in Leo, there is resplendence to the way you sustain yourself. You move toward people, work, and food intuitively, with equal parts gratitude and voraciousness. Falling in step with the resplendent nature of Taurus, you welcome what feels good with reciprocity. Respect for the things you nurture, your relationships, your passions, flows through you, and there’s gratitude there. What we love teaches us how to love. What we keep alive teaches us how to live.
It’s important that you channel that gratitude, it’s important that you find time to feel your own life. While different influences might have you scattering your energy, over-committing, over-thinking, there’s an animal in you that longs to retreat back toward the den you call your home. This month, Leo, carve out the space you need to feel like yourself again. Remember that your home is not only where you lay your head or the pride that sustains you, your home is also your brilliant machine of a body—aching to be stretched and tended to.
Who were you seven years ago and what did you want then? Have you gotten it, do you still believe that your dreams are possible? The only person who can make you feel worthy of your desires is you. There is a kind of deeply personal form of solitude, a kind of meditation, an intention you must set within yourself, that will help you see your own reflection with clear eyes. I believe you are wise enough to find out for yourself what that is and choose it. In choosing it, you not only choose to strengthen yourself but to strengthen all your bonds.
After this full moon in Scorpio, Virgo, you might find yourself picking up signals. Like a radio tower built on land, transmitting messages from over the blue watery expanse, you’ve got information. Sorting through the cacophony of sounds, crossed wires, static, and cut-off messages, that’s where your work begins. Questions arise out from under the pile of human interaction: What was meant for you? What has nothing to do with you? What contact was anticipated? What contact was made and what was lost? At what cost? When is it your responsibility to reach out? This kind of work is slow, vital, and, for those of us who love the act of meaning-making, extremely pleasurable.
This month, I implore you to recline into the part of yourself that loves meaning, the part of you that looks for it and makes it. I call forward in you a dedication to witness and record your world as if you’re a historian dedicated to the contemporary moment. If a feeling arises, a deep ache, sort within yourself for a source. Cite it. Register the amplitude of your waves. Write down what brings you pleasure, record the places where energy leaks from. Record the frequency of your resistance to stopping the leaks. This month you are responsible for yourself so give no one else your notebook, not to hold, not to read, and not to feel responsible for. Imagine that everyone around you has their own record, their own methodology. You are not responsible for their notebooks, and you’re not responsible for what’s inside of them either.
You must understand that this is a preparation. That the world wants to tell you something, something vital to who you are and who you’re becoming. But, before you can translate its signals, you’ve got to learn how to parse what’s yours from what doesn’t belong to you. If you want something big, you’ve got to be able to receive it. Grudges can go, clothes and identities that no longer fit, regrets that sit around changing nothing. Clear the way Virgo, if it’s no longer your business, it’s not meant to take up your capacity.
Some things are given to us, Libra, and some things we’ve got to learn to cultivate for ourselves. This can be a tricky lesson to learn for someone who is otherwise self-motivated, an indirect adjustment for those of us who have had to scrap together new lives out of the rags of old ones. On the surface, you sail over solitude, build your boat, and show a map to any person who climbs on board—offering companionship where others seek to control. There is a compass in you that guides you toward an open sea with further possibilities, there is a magic that can easily find and amplify the magic in others. And so, love is always possible, a constellation you recognize through the deepest fog.
It’s hard to admit that love isn’t enough. Not the kind we maintain and nurture with others, anyway, not the kind we seek to evoke in our peers. It’s beautiful and life-giving, but it’s not enough. Self-love is the only thing that guards us from our self-harming habits, draining obsessions, and patterns of dependency. Self-love recognizes that these patterns are cyclical, rooted in pain, and ultimately a part of us. They don’t leave us when we are loved well, they contract with fear of loss.
This month, Libra, spend time figuring out ways you withhold love from yourself, even as you call for love from others. Interrogate the ways you take care of yourself on a very material level: are you running your body down, running on reserve energy, eating without intention or barely eating at all? What is not sacred about food? What is not sacred about rest? Dock your boat, Libra, and look again at the companions you have chosen for this journey. Around you, angels offer up communal repair, and that’s a blessing. Still, there is no exchange rate in relationships. We give what we are able to give when we are able to give it. We receive as much as we believe we deserve.
Last night as I said goodnight to the full moon, I lit a candle. The candle had arrived into my care by way of a love spell skit I’d won at a cute little event where I was invited to read. There had been a raffle, and I knew, looking at the prizes (some of which I desired much more, like bath goods), that I would win the love spell. I knew this because the love was the last thing I was ready to let back into my life and clearly the thing that wanted me most. We’re always summoning each other, thin skin lighting up for the arrow’s point. What all Scorpios know: loss is sacred and love a purifying flame.
Your solitude has soothed you, Scorpio, but it’s good to see you scuttling across the desert grabbing claws with those you know to call your kind. And, it’s true that you will always find your kind—girls with blades dangling between their breasts, queers with shy smiles giving way to teeth so sharp they’ll whittle you down to the lead like a #2 pencil. It feels good, doesn’t it, to look back at each other, to stay a little longer, to lean your head back and let them run their fingers softly through your hair? It’s around you now, the blush of an opening.
Lots of people want to know what love is but your path is to learn what it’s not. Be patient with yourself, desert star, and be kind. Offer yourself the second chances you so steadily offer others. Be generous. Besides, there are whole other worlds where the girl you were seven years ago is still roaming the dark searching for night blooms. And, she has lost a parent, a great love, a good friend, a dream she bet her whole life on. You should write her a letter and tell her that a heart of stone is still a living thing. Stones change, slowly, stones sing to each other in a language only stones know.
How’s that detox going, Sagittarius? You know, the one you said you were definitely going on. If you’re like any other Sag dominant I know, you broke that commitment moments after making it, like there’s something about a rule that makes you itch with resentment even when you’re the one setting it. There isn’t a law alive that can reign in your restless desire. Still, there are ways to get around the rebel in you, restraint posed in the form of a challenge for instance.
Alright, take the challenge if you want, Sagittarius. Cleanse your body, cleanse old stagnating ideas, clear out whatever is standing in the way of your extraordinary life. What you lack in will you make up for in ambition and, besides, no one can see the trajectory of your arrow as well as you. Are you watching the sharp point pierce the sky? There it goes, sailing, every time you bet on yourself.
Perhaps we’re all talking about what we want the wrong way, limitations born out of a desire to reimagine the self are experiments. Maybe this month you’re your own personal scientist. You’ll never experience your life as someone else, you can break a habit, but the animal remains—a kind of breed, a kind of inner coding. Still, a regimen, an intention, can be a powerful guideline and reminder to show up. Are you afraid that your arrow won’t make the bull’s eye? Some of us are afraid to say what our dreams are out loud and some of us are stringing the bows of fate with sexy self-actualizing arrows. You’re welcome at both parties, but one of them is a guaranteed thrill, and I know you like that.
The ache to affect change in one’s life, to make an impact, to push through—you feel it deeply, Capricorn, and I relate. But, always a resistance, a rain that turns the road muddy and impassible. I know it’s old hat, Saturn, Pluto, their severe weather, but the shadow of Mars retrograde pushes and pushes the cart onto the road. The wheels spin but get no traction, if you listen closely, your collection of deep sighs is a song worth recording. There’s a lesson here if you want it, not that you’re short on lessons.
Everything retrograde is up for review, everything retrograde is unwilling to make the same mistake twice. Alright, then take a lesson from Vesta, the asteroid that sticks with you through May, and spend time thinking about your purpose. Sure, you want to get on the road and get the job done, but to what end? Mars retrograde will be out of bounds May 17, right when it moves out of Cap and into Aqua, and if it’s a new way you’re looking for, then a new way is coming for you. Stay open, Capricorn, and don’t act like you know everything. Even the most methodical creatures bow to nature’s whimsy.
Still, to receive, you’d got to have some idea of what you’re looking for. It’s not enough to say you’re unsatisfied. Call in what satisfies you, and the world will expand your definition. Look again at the mistakes you won’t be making a second time around. Your answers have the potential to transform you. Don’t waste your time convincing yourself that the work you hate will turn into work you love. Don’t wait for someone to become the person you want them to be—they won’t do it on your timetable. Foster what feeds you so that when the time comes, you’re strong to rise up and rebuild.
Ah, my transcendent star baby, where is your mind? Is it floating on its back over the river of knowledge, dipping into the celestial sea so that you might understand your heartache as a thing that has been written? There are those of us who want daily life and those of us for whom daily life won’t do. I’d ask which one of us you are this month, but we both already know. Still, it’s worth saying that the ordinary is two things at once, a doorway to love and a veil against it. Today I saw a pale yellow magnolia for the first time in my life and gleefully cried, “SHUT THE FUCK UP!” to the tree like we were sisters. What we get used to, we take for granted. When we hunger for the unknown, we ache to betray our own lives.
“Look at the light through the windowpane,” writes Aquarian poet Richard Siken in his poem "Scheherazade," “That means it’s noon, that means / we’re inconsolable. / Tell me how all this, and love too, will ruin us. / These, our bodies, possessed by light. / Tell me we’ll never get used to it.”
Okay, Aquarius, I’ll tell you. There’s not a heart beating that gets used to ruin, to grief, not a soul anchored to Earth that doesn’t light up like a votive when love arrives. Just as the beguiling unknown gives no guarantee of succor, daily life has the possibility to grow sacred with time.
Do you attempt, in your hermetic way, to make a tome of your life—a story you already cast the ending to when you allowed it to begin? Results vary, Aquarius, based on participation. Inside your life, one tree heavy with pale yellow blooms. When the petals fall open like hundreds of canaries mid-flight, it’s because they want to, that’s all.
You know how in that one song Lauryn Hill sang, “Don’t be a hard rock when you really are a gem, baby girl.” I want you to ignore the fact that some rocks are gems in this moment, lest that distract you, and focus on the idea. Which, if I may elaborate, is somewhere between a chastisement and an endearment (something Hill was v. v. good at delivering), an invitation to realize your own preciousness and power.
I’m thinking about those words and that song while I’m thinking of you, I’m singing it to myself as I envision Chiron packing his bags and making moves out the door. You’ve spent enough time looking for wisdom in your pain, it’s time to find the wisdom in your pleasure. I’m singing these lines to myself as I contemplate all the ways Eros in Pisces might have you craving a creative outlet but expending all your creative energy on intimate exchanges that leave your passionate heart feeling without. Haven’t you already learned you’re not down for whatever?
Excuse me, Pisces, but in a world where people have forgotten how to tend to each other, your creative work can’t wait. You want distractions that lead to glimmering schools swimming through your every stream, you want someone else to bring it on home but passion begets passion, Pisces, and what are you passionate about? How do you show it? I hear you saying it, but I’m gonna need you to show it.