Art by Taylor Dow

We’re in Taurus Territory

The bull’s out of the pen! Taurus charges ahead while Pluto turns retrograde and planets switch signs.

Goodbye, fiery Aries. It’s Taurus time! Not only is the Sun stampeding into Earth sign Taurus on Wednesday, but many planets are also playing musical chairs this week as they shift into new signs and flavor the sky with zesty transition energy. Final decisions will have to wait. We’re seeing old matters through new lenses and settling into changing angles. Plus, Pluto is grinding to a standstill on Thursday and turning retrograde until September.

Speaking of retrogrades: It’s true that Venus ended its retrograde last Saturday. Though the illuminating-yet-irritating relationship lessons and confrontations have eased significantly, they’re not quite over. Sorry to report it, but Venus issues of love and value will keep trickling into our thoughts until May 20, when the planet clears its post-retrograde shadow zone and finally—seriously, really—moves on. In fact, this week you might see an interpersonal situation (or character) from around January 30 circle back for discussion. And on Friday, Venus and Saturn form a tense 90-degree angle called a square (thankfully the pair won’t form another square until October). So something you really want could require more effort or funds than you expected, or you might hit a jarring bump on the road toward smooth relations.


While impatient Aries insisted we “Leap!”, sensible Taurus warns us to “Look first!” The whoosh of Aries passion was exciting, but Taurus demands our actions be steady and methodical so we can turn our wild ideas into practical, achievable goals. Represented by a horned bull and ruled by fertile Venus, Taurus is a grounded, hard-headed sign interested in what’s real, touchable, and secure.

Here in Taurus territory, we tend to think more about the physical realities of being human: housing, food, health, clothing, and savings. Taurus folks also have a reputation for being quite enthusiastic about good sex and fine wine. (Judging by the plays of famous Taurus William Shakespeare, the man seemed to enjoy bawdy sexual humor and strong ale.) Though Taurus is a cautious sign that detests risks and sudden change, a Taurus isn’t afraid to party down after the workday’s done. Because the sign is associated with planet Venus, sensory pleasures like velvet, visual art, fondue, and kissing are just as important to a Taurus as insurance plans and retirement accounts.


As Pluto creeps to a stop and turns retrograde Thursday, the small-yet-serious planet will provoke us to deal with heavy Pluto matters all week long. There’s a D.C. punk band called Priests whose album title Bodies and Control and Money and Power encapsulates Pluto’s major themes. Add to that list secrets, obsessions, shame, and transformation, and you’ve pretty much got Pluto covered. If these Plutonian issues arise for you this week, be assured they’ll soon pass. Retrograding outer planets like Pluto only poke at our soft spots during the week of their direction switches, allowing us quiet inner reflection and slow-and-steady healing the rest of the time. Nevertheless, Pluto’s movement could shine a strong spotlight on abuses of power and unfair control, both in public and private realms.


Communicate with care on Wednesday the 19th, as close contact between the Sun and Mercury might kick up stubbornness. Consider the possibility that you could be wrong or the story could be more complex than you think. Pluto stations to go retrograde on Thursday the 20th, a day that’s good for permanent endings (even mental habits) and lasting change. Mercury also enters Aries on Thursday, sharpening tongues and shortening tempers for weeks to come. On Friday the 21st Mars enters Gemini, which increases indecisiveness and—well—untruths. Strive to stay honest, even when it’s uncomfortable! Friday’s square between Venus and Saturn could catch up to you a few days later, so brace yourself for disappointment or quarrels that may hit hard even after Friday. A Pisces moon that starts Friday the 21st and lasts until Sunday the 23rd gives the weekend a sensitive, dreamy tone. Don’t be shocked if you find yourself weeping on Saturday when the moon and Neptune touch. But that same tender energy is good for creativity and connection, so direct it wisely over the weekend. Monday the 24th offers a promising career opportunity, while Tuesday the 25th looks less-than-easy. Be gentle.

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