• The Conflict Issue

    April Horoscopes: Have Patience with the Real Pace of Life

    The Conflict Issue
    Horoscopes 3

    Everything you need to know about the Earth opening up and swallowing your planets or the other way around.


    Corina Dross is an artist, astrologer, and rabble-rouser best known for her illustrated card deck, Portable Fortitude. Based out of Philadelphia for the last ten years, she’s currently splitting her time between the East Coast and the Northwest.

    Horoscope web


    April 2017

    Have Patience with the Real Pace of Life

    Do your desires feel more like a compass or a trap? Have you become suspicious of anything that feels too glamorous, or even too pleasurable? Or is passion the one truth that helps you find center? As Venus continues its backward progression (until the 15th), we continue to navigate longings, nostalgia, and tricky conversations with lovers past and present about how we handle love and desire, how we discover truth and make use of beauty. 

    Venus moves from Aries to Pisces at the beginning of the month, shifting the mood from action to introspection. Where Venus in Aries spurred impatience and risk-taking, Venus in Pisces emphasizes desire for the kind of love that can heal us, that can help us transcend our material conditions. Pisces is the place where we dissolve into collective longing, where there are no walls between us and no possibility of borders. Pisces is the lens through which we can see a better world than this one, almost within reach. Pisces is also the energy that lays us open to illusions, deception, and difficulty setting boundaries and saying no. Venus will be in Pisces for almost all of April, helping us soften and sensitize in our relationships, but also inspiring romantic dreams that may not be doing us any favors. This goes especially if idealism and disillusionment are big themes in your life, be wary of falling too deeply into any sweet dreams this month. Instead, use this receptivity to help imagine what kinds of love can help us transform (and not merely escape) the constraints of our collective trauma, grief, and toxic power relations.

    Also this month, Mercury moves retrograde in Taurus on the 10th. This energy is less about major crises, and more about developing patience with the real pace of life. Our thoughts and plans tend to race far ahead of our physical capacity. Build in some extra time this month, and pay attention to what the physical world has to teach you – especially if you’re getting signals you from your body or environment that you’ve chosen to ignore. This is the time to slow way the fuck down and listen carefully. 

    As always, use these horoscopes as suggestions rather than premonitions. If you have some astro-savvy, read your rising sign first, followed by your Sun and Moon signs. And you can always contact me for a reading, too! 


    All night as I toss and turn, I dream of you traveling through the mountains of a country bathed in honey-warm light, as though the sun is always about to set but never quite gets around to it. I watch you walk a long time, winding across switchbacks and pausing to tighten the straps of your pack. When you reach the village, the buildings are bright with murals. Most depict clashes between people and rows of police, and in every mural the people are winning. I lose count of how many houses tell another piece of the same story. Running my fingers across some brightly painted bricks, I ask you if every building in town is an anarchist squat. “No, no, hardly!” you say, pointing at the one I’m looking at. “That’s the squat run by the totally reformist Basque separatist party youth branch.” Dearest Aries: remember this month that while nothing is ever perfect, you have the chance of finding something damn near.  


    Scientists often ask misguided questions, like: “Why do monotremes still exist?” These egg-laying mammals, of which only two species remain, are considered dreadfully old-fashioned now that we’ve got so many spiffy mammalian upgrades like placentas and marsupial pouches. But you feel a deep sense of kinship with the platypodes: why mess with something that has worked well enough for eons? Worse, why fetishize rapid change? In a culture where “slow” is euphemism for “stupid,” it’s easy to overlook the virtues of slowness. As Mercury moves retrograde in your sign this month, you’ll have several opportunities to demonstrate that your thoroughness and deeply felt convictions are at least as valuable as other people’s hastiness. 


    This month may feel as though you’re writing a resume but you have to redact all your biggest accomplishments. Page after page, you build up a story only to have it end in a long black bar. Sometimes entire paragraphs look like rows of dark rectangles, punctuated by innocent words like “with.” Don’t despair, though – and don’t give up on the project, however incomplete it may feel. Writing in code is still a way to send your energy in the right direction. Even if you can’t share widely what you’re up to, it’s worth conveying what you can. 


    “I loved someone once, and everything was good between us – except he wouldn’t let me suffer.” So said a friend once about an almost perfect relationship. It may sound like a minor complaint, but think about how important it is for you to deeply experience your life. Anyone trying to shield you (or themselves) from the full force and depth of your pain is doing you a disservice. Dive into the waterfall this month. Experience the torrent. Feel the first rains drizzling on your face and the thunder shaking the earth, the sucking of mud against your feet, and the gentle warmth that follows when the storm has passed. Don’t expect any lover to willingly run out into a thunderstorm every time you ask them to, but don’t let anyone stop you from doing it yourself. 


    Some cats roar, others purr, and never the twain shall meet. So it is in nature, but not in you. This month asks you to find the fullest range of vocalization between soft, rhythmic purring and hoarse, volcanic roaring. In other words, you don’t get to fragment your nature between tender and fierce, good and bad, lover and fighter. Find those ways of singing, teaching, wooing, defending, and wilding the fuck out that are flexible enough to draw on your full range of emotion. Your voice, in all its modes, is needed right now. 


    This month you are more convinced than ever that there is a secret concordance by which all phenomena may be decoded and understood in their essential relations to one another. You want to be the one to decode this language. Not for the glory of it – but merely because it will nag at you until it’s done, like a half-remembered song playing in your head, resisting being shaped into its proper phrases. True, you’re suspicious of Platonic essentialism, but that never stopped you from knowing in your gut a certain truth underneath things that needs to be named. Begin this month by veering in the opposite direction from science: use subjectivity instead of empiricism. Create a highly personal taxonomy. For example: “the smell of pine needles corresponds to nostalgia, while the smell of gas station bathroom deodorizer corresponds to shame and alarm.” Only through the idiosyncratic and specific will you reach the universal. 


    When I was younger, I encountered a being called the Mud Friend. It had a face like a scarecrow’s made of a burlap sack with stitched on eyes, and the rest of it was made of earth. Blades of grass grew from its hunched back, and it moved, when it moved at all, like the slowest snowball rolling down a muddy hill and picking up everything in its path. The Mud Friend visited most often when I was in class, diligently taking notes on some heady topic. I would catch a whiff of wet earth and composting leaves, and hear a low voice rumbling, “Your ways are not our ways.” I always felt both pleased and embarrassed by these visits, as though a filthy dog had followed me to school. This month, a similar being is trying to catch your attention. It offers an antidote to a kind of loneliness that is difficult to cure, though this may come at the expense of your pride. But if you don’t mind a little mud, you can receive tangible support from unusual sources this month. 


    In my dream you had a new water purifier that worked by touch. You’d filled a large pitcher with brackish water, and as you touched it the brown water became crystal clear. I believe we all applauded, but I had my suspicions that it wasn’t the filter but your touch that had worked the magic. In fact, we couldn’t see any filtration device at all. If it is true, as I believe it is, that you possess this kind of power, I’d like to ask you a few questions: 1. Whatever you clean, you’re moving into yourself. Do you know how to move it out of you when you’re done? 2. When does the process of purification end? 


    You’ve always dreamed of the perfect home, some queer land project ridiculously close to a major city. The living is cheap enough that you can travel frequently and there’s a steady crew of dear friends who are content to stick around and keep things running smoothly while you’re gone. This fantasy will always remain a fantasy until you decide what you’re willing to stake for a sense of stability. As Saturn edges through the last few degrees of your sign, you’re near the end of a long investigation into the nature of freedom and responsibility. Think about your ideals again: what level of chaos, or poverty, or interpersonal difficulty, or tedious hard work are you willing to fold into this dream? And while you’re hammering away at practical reality, recognize that there is a piece of you that needs to keep dreaming. How do you let these dreams of absolute freedom infuse your path without destabilizing it?


    This month, you’ll want to name all the things that don’t have names yet still matter deeply to you: the kind of a stitch that is fully taut and strong and the kind where the thread is weak or knotted. Or, the clarity you feel on some mornings and the haze of dread or anger you feel on others. Most of all, the particular conditions that arise when you experience both clarity and stitches that are strong and solid at the same time. You can dig deep into your past to find the appropriate names, as Icelandic speakers do whenever they need a neologism, or you can give each of these conditions private names that only you need to understand. Whatever your strategy, there is something you must speak of right now that has not yet been named. Find the words. 


    One of your biggest secrets is your mysticism. You hide it well behind a love of theory, science, discovery, creative juxtaposition, and analytical research, but it’s humming away behind all your fancy ideas. On rainy days your friends might even catch a waft of incense from you as you walk by. You like to be able to prove and justify what matters to you: the why of it all. But in all your investigations, you’ve discovered there are experiences you can’t explain – and that these are often the most moving and fruitful. This month, draw on your hidden resources and immerse yourself in experiences you can’t rationally defend. 


    Whether this is the best or worst of times depends a lot on decisions you made at the end of January and beginning of February. As Venus retrogrades back into your sign, you get to revisit the choices you made about love, self-sacrifice, idealism, and collectivity. You get to make better choices this time, if you didn’t then – you’re learning right now how to love in ways that increase your sensitivity and compassion without leaving you powerless and drained. Don’t fall for false binaries between self-care and collective liberation. Pay attention to what you need to stay connected.  

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