Yin Yang XIII

They went to the market before going to the temple site, and there were murmurs. The king, the princes, the king’s mother…

They looked for the f & v man, and he was standing in front of his f & v stand, doing-

What’s he doing?

Sun salutations, said the old woman. The chakra book has step by step instructions on how to do them.

They heard a horse. A man got off his horse and tied it to a tree. He walked across the market, and there were murmurs. He smells of spice, of nutmeg and cloves…

The man of spice saw the f & v man, and joined him, and did what he was doing, and there were murmurs. I’d like to join too, well why don’t you, well come with me…

The f & v man saw people joining him. He doubled the sun salutations for everyone to do the whole sequence.

When he finished, he pressed the palms of his hands together at the level of his heart, and people instinctively did the same.

He reached for a girdle in his stand and offered it to the man of spice.

Thank you. What is it?

It’s a girdle modelled after the girdle in the sky. It’s done in colours to animate the solar plexus chakra, he said, clasping it around the man of spice. It helps bring self love, joy and a sense of purpose.

The man of spice looked for something in his pockets to offer back, and found a cigar.

I’d like to offer you this cigar from the land I come from.


Sun salutations by Vernika Singh

I recognize you, said the old woman, with a twinkle in her eye. If it isn’t the legendary dark knight! El Cristo Negro, I’d like you to meet my son, King of Valley.

What brings you to these parts, the king asked him.

Rumours, said the dark knight. I’ve heard rumours of a girdle in the sky, and a temple to honour it. I’ve also heard rumours that the king of the neighbouring valley is opposed to the temple.

Dad’s been calling him Opposition, said the Second prince. People have been crossing his valley to reach ours, hoping to see the girdle in the sky. He’s worried about the traffic the temple will bring.

I’ve told Opposition to profit from the traffic, said the king. Build lodges, the starry night lodge, the rose petal lodge. But he doesn’t want any traffic at all. All he does is grumble-

The sky grumbled.

What was that?

It sounded like rumbling thunder.

More like a pig grunting.

The sky grumbled again.

Rumbling thunder is all it is, the king assured them.

The dark knight went to get his horse and walked with the group to the temple site.

His valley will be the easiest way here, because of the protected forest around us, said the king.

So when you start building the temple, all he will do is grumble, the dark knight asked him.

No. He has threatened war-

The girdle tightened.

The princes were speechless.

We’ve reached an impasse, him and I, the king continued, but our councils keep trying. We have a meeting this afternoon.

I would like to attend, said the dark knight.


In Opposition by Francene Levinson

How would you like it if I built a temple, and everyone had to cross your valley, your protected forest, to reach it?

But you don’t have a protected forest!

I have unprotected meadows, Valley, and people have been trampling on them.

If I may intervene, said the black knight, directing his question to Opposition. If a temple is to be built, no matter what, where would you build it?

If I have to suffer the consequences of the temple, the temple should be in my valley, he said.


I’m trying to prevent war, because I will go to war if you build it in your valley.

We have the plans, the material, everything ready to go.

Your temple, your plans and your material, in my valley.


Overwhelmed by Francene Levinson

War, said Halley, writing it down.

Chest Girdle No To ignore War

Whatever you decide, make sure you can look at yourself wearing the decision, said the old woman.

Father used to say that, said the king.

Will you be able to look at yourself if you start a war?

The king was silent.

Silence means no, said Halley.

Will you be able to look at yourself if you don’t build the temple?

The king was silent.

Silence means no, said Halley.

Then build it in the neighbouring valley.

We should have first say in all matters concerning the temple, dad.

We should have full access for its upkeep.

I’ll negotiate an agreement, said the king.

When will you tell the people of valley?

What if there’s an uprising?

What if they go after Opposition?

El Cristo Negro has offered his services, said the old woman. He can train the guards to contain an uprising.

We’re joining, said the First prince.


My reflection by Frida Kahlo

Thr king made his way to the neighbouring valley.

Opposition had demarcated the land for the temple, a green rectangle that touched the boundary with valley. I’m making it easier for you, he’d said.

They were building the road that would lead to the temple, and they had broken the ground on both sides of the road.

What for, the king asked a passerby.

For the lodges. The starry night lodge and the rose petal lodge.

His blood boiled. He reminded himself to stay calm, stay calm, as he entered Opposition’s castle. He needed to discuss how much the neighbouring valley would contribute to build and maintain the temple.

He sat down, and said, We need to discuss how much your valley will contribute-

The girdle tightened.

Let me rephrase that. We need to discuss numbers-

The girdle tightened.

What’s the matter, Valley?

I’m not feeling well all of a sudden, he said, getting up to leave.

We can talk tomorrow, said Opposition. I’ll walk with you.

They walked together.

What happened to your meadows?

They’ve been put to good use, for the road and the lodges, and the temple, of course.

They looked at the demarcated rectangle, and the rectangle had changed colour.

It’s moving!

They ran to it.

It was filled with magpies, and the magpies were pushing forward, crossing the boundary line, and turning the rectangle into a square.


Photograph by Kimberly Poppe

What have you done, Valley!

I haven’t done anything!

This is your doing!

This is bigger than us, Opposition. Those birds are sacred to the goddess.

You put those birds there!


Don’t you shush me! The temple is supposed to be on my land!

Half on your land and half on mine. A temple with two entrances.

I’m paying for the road!

I’ll pay for half the road, and you’ll pay for half the temple. We’ll split the costs in half.

What about the lodges?

We’re going to build our own lodges.

No you won’t!

Yes we will!

You want war! Is that what you want!

Opposition threw a punch at the king, and the king punched him back.


The king’s blood froze.

What was that, Opposition asked him.

Get down!


Opposition! Get down!

What about the birds?

The king pushed him down, and the two of them lay face down, surrounded by the birds sacred to the goddess.

They heard a swoosh and another swoosh above them.

Don’t look.

Swoosh. Swoosh.

Is it who I think it is?

Yes. Aphrodite is his sweetheart.

I’m sorry.

It’s okay.

I’m not apologizing to you. I’m apologizing to him.

You should apologize to me too.

First stop calling me Opposition. You’re Valley and I’m Neighbour, like we used to be.


I want to distinguish my side of the temple from yours. Get a local artist to make a sculpture of Aphrodite.

We can have two sculptures, one on your side and one on mine.

What about the centre? There should be something in the centre.

We can have a contest for the centre piece.


Photograph by Kimberly Poppe

They trained in the fields adjacent to the castle.

They began with sun salutations, followed by drills, and ended with strategy.

Okay everyone! Gather ’round!

Everyone gathered around El Cristo.

How attached are the people of valley to the idea of the temple, he asked them. How do you think they’ll react when the king announces it will be built next door?

An image just popped into my head, someone said.

Me too.

Was it Gaston?

It was Gaston rounding up the villagers to kill the Beast.

They were holding torches.


I think we’re more civilized than that, someone else said.

It could be, said El Cristo, but what if you came across a mob like that? What would you do?

I wouldn’t confront them if I was alone.

It would be better if we protected the castle.

As soon as they got to the castle, I’d find a way to extinguish the torches.

We’d talk to them. Why are you here? There’s a horrible beast in the castle! Stand back and we’ll investigate.

Hopefully we’d have protective gear on.

The old woman waved from the castle grounds, I have it!

The king’s mother has acquired protective gear for everyone, said El Cristo. You can go try it on.

While they were trying it on, a castle guard came to speak to the king’s mother.

I don’t want to alarm you, dear old woman, but the kings are missing.

Which kings?

Our king and the king of the neighbouring valley. They were last seen walking to the new temple site around noon, and it’s almost sunset. .

Let’s go tell El Cristo.

They told him, and El Cristo gathered everyone around again, and said they were going in search of the missing kings.

Does anyone know where the new temple site is?

We do, said the princes, and they led the way.

King of valley! Can you hear us!

King of the neighbouring valley! Can you hear us!

It was getting dark, and someone said they wished they had torches.

When they were close to the border with the neighbouring valley, the air changed.

Can you hear that?

I hear it.


Birds warbling.

This must be where they spend the night.

Ow! I think a bird just hit my helmet with its beak.

Ow! Me too!

Help! Bird attack!

They were surrounded by flapping wings and beak strikes.

El Cristo!

Where is he?

He doesn’t have protective gear on-

I’m here! I think they’re magpies!

Magpies are the birds of Aphrodite, said Halley.

Do you remember the poem my dad wrote, the Second prince asked her.

Some of the words. Not all of it.

He took his amulet out and held it in his hand, and tried to remember the words.

Rose petals fall
awakes venus from her shell
spring flowers blossom

windsong breezes
lift golden silk tresses
waterfall cascades

blue green butterflies
kiss Aphrodite’s sweet face
starry flutters

The birds around him grew calm.

Everyone repeat after me.

Everyone repeated the poem after him, line by line, until the birds settled.

Let’s try moving forward, he said.

They moved forward, and the birds began attacking them.

Repeat after me!


Photograph by Kimberly Poppe

Do you think it’s safe now?

Swoosh. Swoosh.

This is how people got oracles in the past, said Valley. They would lie down on the earth, and Gaia would send an oracle in a dream.

They fell asleep.

El Cristo and the guards fell asleep too, and when morning light woke them, they saw a square filled with magpies, a square that joined valley and the neighbouring valley.

Something grew out of the middle of the square.

The two kings got up and stretched, and carefully made their way toward them.

I saw the centre piece in my dream, said Valley.

I saw it too, said Neighbour.


Floating Seashells by Francene Levinson

In another valley,

2 guards guarding the castle talk.


It’s almost valentine’s day.


So, I don’t have a sweetheart.

Neither do I.

I’m thinking of going to the temple of Aphrodite.

What for?

To make a sacrifice.

A sacrifice to whom, asked the king.

Your majesty, said the guards.

I heard you say something about making a sacrifice.

To Aphrodite, your majesty.

I see, said the king. Has valley completed the temple?

There may be some finishing touches left, but I heard it’s open to the public.

I should send you as my emissaries with an offering, said the king. An offering of flowers to the goddess Aphrodite would do nicely.

We’d gladly go as your emissaries, your majesty.

I will speak to the head guard, said the king. What are your names?

I’m Orgill, sire.

I’m Fil.


Anthurium by Georgia O’Keeffe

The king spoke to the head guard and they decided that someone with knowledge of flowers should accompany the two guards. The head guard asked the florist and the florist suggested Iris, and Iris said she wouldn’t go without Lily.


Light of Iris by Georgia O’Keeffe

We’re going to see the new temple, said Iris with excitement. Fortune is smiling on us.

The florist says that valley has flowers we’ve never seen before, petunias and black lilies-

I can’t wait to see her, what she looks like, Aphrodite of the girdle. The king says there may be two statues. We may have to prepare two bouquets.

What did you think of the boys, Lily asked her.

They’re alright.

The boys too thought the girls were alright.


Blue flower by Georgia O’Keeffe

The fastest route to valley from another valley is through the protected forest, said the king.

It’s been forbidden, said the head guard. They will have to travel the longer route and go through the neighbouring valley. A road has been paved to reach the temple.

That’s a three day journey.

I will make arrangements for them to spend the nights in lodges.

Not in the same lodges, not so close to valentine’s day.


Black hills with cedar by Georgia O’Keeffe

Dawn is the best time for departures.

It’s when the air is freshest.

They left at dawn.

The king gave each one a hand drawn map, In case you stray.

They had lunch under the shade of a tree. The earth was loose under the shade, and Iris ran her hands through the loose earth and found a shell. Look, she said.

She ran her hands through the loose earth some more, and found more shells, I didn’t know you could find sea shells so far inland.

This could all have been covered by the ocean, once upon a time, said Fil, looking around him.

They used to use sea shells as currency, said Orgill.

That’s right, laughed Fil.

What’s so funny?

The king once paid us with seashells. It was an april fools’ joke.

Lily touched the shells that Iris had collected, What if children brought them here from the sea shore, and buried them under this old tree for you to find?

She took out her flower book and leafed through the pages, There’s a section somewhere here about sea shells. Ah, here it is. She read, Sea shells can give protection from evil spirits and from sins of the flesh-

Iris took the book from her, and said, Where does it say that! She looked at the page and there was nothing on it about sea shells. Liar, she cried, and Lily laughed, and they chased each other, and the air changed.

Freshest at dawn, and playful in the afternoon.


Red canna by Georgia O’Keeffe

Orgill’s eyes followed Iris, and Fil’s eyes followed Lily, and the girls were conscious of their eyes.

A sun beam touched Orgill’s face, and he got up, Time to go.

Lily picked up the shells and kept them in her pack, and they carried on.

They had walked in pairs of boy boy, girl girl, with one conversation uniting them. Now they walked in pairs of boy girl, boy girl, with two conversations flowing side by side.

They reached the village around the lake before dusk, the place where they would spend the night.

Let’s go for a swim before we find the lodge.

Lily gave each one a shell to hold, To be honourable.

The girls turned around while the boys undressed and jumped into the lake, and the boys turned around while the girls undressed and jumped into the lake.

Every time Iris and Orgill got too close, Lily pulled Iris away, and every time Lily and Fil got too close, Iris pulled Lily away.

They refreshed, and did the same thing coming out of the lake as they did going in.

Freshest at dawn, playful in the afternoon, and honourable at dusk.


Lake George by Georgia O’Keeffe

What is the lodge called?

The Cecil and John Lodge.

There were two Cecil and John Lodges, one across from the other.

They entered one, and the woman at the counter said, This is the Cecil side, for girls. You boys can skip across the street to the John side.

They said goodnight to each other

Sweet dreams

I’ll dream of you tonight

Until dawn.


Two calla lily on pink by Georgia O’Keeffe

The next day, boy and girl held hands.

You know how this whole journey started? With Orgill wanting to make a sacrifice, said Fil.

To whom, Iris asked Orgill.

Orgill shook his head.

To the goddess Aphrodite, said Fil.

For love, Iris asked Orgill.

Orgill nodded.

How did the king get involved, Lily wanted to know.

He overheard Orgill, and asked if the temple was completed. He decided to send us as his emissaries to make an offering to the goddess.

An offering of flowers.

They walked in silence.

My feet hurt, said Lily.

I’ll carry you, said Fil, and turned to carry her, and she ran away, and he chased her.

It was the playful time of day.

He chased her, and Iris and Orgill ran after them, and they came upon a lake, smaller than Lake George, and something in the lake made them stop.

Lily fell on her knees, Is it possible?

It’s impossible, said Fil, kneeling beside her.

They must belong to the goddess, said Iris. Who else could they belong to?

We’ll take them to her, said Orgill.


They approached the shells with reverence, and boy girl each pulled one out of the water.

They are flawless.

Made for an immortal.

What if we break them?

We’ll take it nice and slow.

They problem solved on how to carry them, and boy girl each decided to portage them.

It was harder than they thought, and dusk came before they reached the place they were supposed to spend the night.

We’ll spend it here, said Fil, and they put the shells down.

Fil lifted one side of the shell with his pack and Lily’s pack, and Orgill lifted one side of the other shell with his pack and Iris’ pack.

The girls can sleep inside the shells and we’ll sleep outside.

They built a fire, and boy girl, boy girl cuddled with each other.

Freshest at dawn, playful in the afternoon, honourable at dusk, and when night came, the girls crawled inside the shells, and Lily pulled Fil in with her and Iris pulled Orgill.

Night brought exploration.


Slightly open clam shell by Georgia O’Keeffe

They were bashful when they woke up, and when they crawled out of the shells, the sun was high. The girls ran to the bushes, and the boys faced a tree. When the boys turned around, the girls came back, and there was gaiety.


Blue morning glories by Georgia O’Keeffe

They continued to the place they were supposed to spend the night before, and people gathered around them.

Is it possible?

It’s impossible!

They must belong to the goddess.

Where did you find them?

In the lake smaller than Lake George.

We should build a shrine where you found them.

Shouldn’t we inform the priest and the priestess of the temple first? They should be the ones to guide us.

Send a messenger to the temple.

Who has a horse?

I have a horse, said Slayte.

Slayte, go tell them all that’s been said here.

I will, he said, and left to get his horse.

We should build litters to carry the shells to the temple.

Carrying them on litters would be easier than portaging them, said Fil.

Are you the emissaries of the king of another valley?

We are.

We have your rooms ready. Why don’t you go refresh and have a warm meal-

But the shells-

We don’t want to leave them.

The girls can go first. Come with me, girls.


Bella donna by Georgia O’Keeffe

Slayte entered the temple, and the temple attendant came to greet him.

I need to speak to the priest and priestess, please.

We don’t have them yet.

What do you mean?

The Oracle of Op-Pollo said- His attendant said that the priest and the priestess of the temple of Aphrodite had to be a married couple, and we would recognize them because a cow would appear. Many couples have come wanting to be the priest and the priestess, but no cow has appeared.

So who’s running the place?

Mind your tongue, lad. With or without a priest and a priestess, the goddess runs this place.

Is there someone else I could speak to? It’s about sea shells discovered in the lake smaller than Lake George.

As a matter of fact, the kings are here. They are talking to a group of artists from valley and the neighbouring valley about a centre piece made of sea shells. They can’t seem to get it right. Why don’t you come with me.

Slayte went with him.

What’s your name and where are you from?

I’m Slayte from the place.

The attendant introduced him to the kings, and the kings heard all that had been said in the place.

Slayte, said the king of valley, do the sea shells discovered in the small lake look anything like this?

Valley showed him a drawing of his dream and Neighbour’s dream.

Very much like that, your majesty, if they were joined together.


Series 1, No. 8 by Georgia O’Keeffe

Slayte spent the night at the rose petal lodge, and rode back the following day. He made his way to the shells, and saw each shell resting on a litter, and beside them were makeshift cots. The ones who found them were talking to the people of place.

Slayte, you’re back!

What news?

Slayte told them what the attendant said about the priest and the priestess, and about the kings and the centre piece.

They want you to bring the shells to the temple.

That was always our intention, said Orgill. We leave tomorrow at dawn.

What about the shrine where the shells were found?

The village around the small lake should be consulted, said Iris. They should be the ones in charge of the shrine.

We can show them where we found them on our way back to another valley, said Lily. She looked at Fil, and said, I’d like to see the small lake again.

Fil caressed her cheeks, the nape of her neck.

When night came and the people of place went indoors, boy girl, boy girl joined cots to explore some more.


Purple petunias by Georgia O’Keeffe

They left at dawn.

They carried the litters bearing the shells to the temple, and the kings and the artists and the attendant came to receive them.

Won’t you come inside?

Not until we freshen up, your majesty.

Not until we visit the market. We want to make an offering of flowers to the goddess Aphrodite-

In the name of the king of another valley.

Are you his emissaries?

We are.

We have rooms for you in valley, at the floating seashells lodge.

Thank you, your majesty.

Excuse me, your majesty, where can I buy a bull?

A bull! Whatever for!

I want to make a sacrifice to the goddess. Is there a sacrificial altar on the grounds?

There’s a rock over there, pointed Fil. It has a nice flat surface.

That will do, said Orgill.

They freshened up at the lodge, and went to the market.

The girls got busy with flowers. Lily checked the names in her flower book.

How many statues of the goddess are there?

Two, they told her.

She took a basket and gave a basket to Iris, to pick flowers for two bouquets.

The boys asked about buying a bull.

I’ll sell you a cow, not a bull.

I’ve only got two bulls at the moment, too precious to sell. I need them for seed.

I’ll sell you a ram.

I wouldn’t buy his ram if I were you.

His ram will sacrifice you before you sacrifice him.


Ram’s head and white hollyhock by Georgia O’Keeffe

The honourable time of day was approaching.

The attendant was overseeing the lighting of the braziers on the temple grounds.

The musicians scheduled to play that evening were tuning their instruments.

Valley and Neighbour were telling the old woman and El Cristo about the emissaries, how one of them had asked where he could buy a bull.

He said he wanted to sacrifice a bull to the goddess.

Oh dear.

All I could think of was the oracle. What exactly did he say, Valley asked El Cristo.

He said we would recognize the priest and priestess of the temple because a cow would appear.

Not a bull?

I’m pretty sure he said a cow.

The musicians began to play, and they listened to the music.


There they are, said the kings, pointing at the entrance.

Iris and Lily came in carrying bouquets, followed by Orgill and Fil. They looked around in admiration, and stopped in front of one of the sculptures of Aphrodite.

It was carved in wood, Aphrodite leaning against a tree, lost in thought, lightly touching the girdle below her breasts, a girdle embroidered in silver, copper and gold.

She’s beautiful, isn’t she?


Where can I leave the flowers?

Here, said the old woman, showing her where.

Thank you.

The old woman told them who she was. She walked with them to the centre of the temple.

This is where the shells you found will be, joined together, standing on a blue pedestal. We’ll be able to walk around them.

When can we see them?

In a day or two.

They went to light candles and incense, and they sat on a bench to listen to the music and look at the art work on the walls.

After a while, Orgill got up. We should go, he told Fil. You’ll see us when you come out of the other entrance, he told Iris and Lily.

The boys left, and the old woman asked the girls why.

Orgill bought a cow.

He wanted to sacrifice a bull to the goddess, but nobody would sell him a bull, so he bought a cow instead.

She’s outside, tied to a tree.

I see, said the old woman, signalling to the kings and El Cristo to meet her at the other entrance.

They walked to the other entrance, and stopped to see the other sculpture of Aphrodite.

It was made of marble, Aphrodite in a garden of magpies.


Blue and white abstraction by Georgia O’Keeffe

The attendant saw the boys walking to the sacrificial altar. He waved at them, Got your bull?

A cow.

He came over to look at the cow, Got everything you need?

Yes, in my pack, said Orgill, opening it.

The girls, the old woman, the kings and El Cristo joined them.

Orgill took out a bag of barley and poured it in a bowl. He sprinkled barley in a circle that enclosed them, the cow, and the altar.

With this barley, I make this space a sacred space.

He asked them to take some barley and throw it on the altar, and they did.

I now have to ask the cow if she consents to the sacrifice.

Why the sacrifice, the old woman asked him. Is it for a wish?

A wish granted. It’s to give thanks.


How will you know if the cow consents?

Orgill took a jug out, I’ll pour some water over her, and if she shakes it off, I’ll know that she consents.

Let me get you some water, said the attendant, taking the jug.

When he returned, Orgill poured water over the cow, and the cow didn’t react. The cow stayed still.

There are other ways of thanking the goddess, said the old woman. What was the wish granted?

A sweetheart, said Orgill, taking Iris’ hand.

Fil instinctively took Lily’s hand.

Love, said Neighbour. Sweet love.

You could thank her by making the gift of love official, said Valley. The wedding officiant is in tonight.

Boy girl, boy girl looked at each other.

Are you ready for this?


Will you marry me?



Series 1, No. 4 by Georgia O’Keeffe

When they went inside the temple, the cow shook the water off, and got busy eating the barley on the altar and on the ground.

Moo, she said.

She wanted more.

She walked to the temple steps and took mental measurements, and knew she wouldn’t be able to climb them. She saw a wheelchair and wondered what the wheelchair would do, and the wheelchair went up a ramp beside the steps. She followed the wheelchair and went inside the temple.

She looked from side to side, and suddenly saw the bag of barley sticking out of a pack.

Moo, she said.

There he is.

She walked up to him. He was signing a piece of paper and she licked his hand.


Cow licking by Georgia O’Keeffe

There were many couples getting married, one after the other.

When it was Orgill and Iris’ turn, Fil and Lily witnessed the marriage.

When it was Fil and Lily’s turn, Orgill and Iris witnessed the marriage. Orgill was signing as witness when the cow licked his hand.

The four of them looked at the cow, surprised to see her there.

The attendant came to the rescue. He asked Orgill for the bag of barley, and took the cow away.

After the ceremony was over, they went outside where food had been laid out for the newlyweds. They each took a plate of food and went to sit around a brazier.

It was extraordinary, wasn’t it?

Her presence seemed larger in the temple.

You’re right. She didn’t seem like an ordinary cow.

Remember what Slayte said? That the priest and the priestess would be recognized because a cow would appear.

She licked your hand, Orgill.

I’m not the priest, said Orgill. I can’t be confined to a temple-

He grimaced.

Baby, are you okay?

Something tightened around my chest.

Valley had been looking for them, and found them the moment Orgill lifted his shirt. He heard them gasp.

What is it, Orgill asked.

It’s- Isn’t it the girdle of Aphrodite?

It’s beautiful.

It won’t unclasp!

Don’t force it, said Valley. One day it will unclasp on its own and fly away.

A woman tending the braziers passed by, and the girdle camouflaged.

It can camouflage, said Valley.

Why is it around me?

It can ask for a sacrifice, said Valley. Is it you the cow licked?

Yes, but I don’t have to consent-

The girdle tightened, and the woman tending the braziers bent forward.

Is it affecting her?

Yes, said Valley. Why don’t you all come to the castle for dinner tomorrow. I’ll ask her to join us.

Wait, said Iris. Can he still- It’s our wedding night and-

He can do everything with it, Valley reassured her, and he went to talk to the woman tending the braziers.

Iris touched the girdle. She ran her fingers through the hair on his chest. Kissed a nipple.

Let’s go to the lodge, he said.

Boy girl, boy girl held hands and went to the lodge.

It was the time of night when the air asked for exploration.

Freshest at dawn, playful in the afternoon, honourable at dusk, and in the night, exploration.


Inside canna by Georgia O’Keeffe

Chart for Georgia O’Keeffe, born November 15, 1887, Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, time unknown

The duality in every sign.

The duality in Scorpio.

There is a virgin goddess in Scorpio, lunar goddess, huntress, mistress of the animals, and below the surface, there is a goddess of initiations, goddess of the underworld.

There is poison that can heal and poison that can kill.

Native Americans spoke of the healing properties in the root of jack in the pulpit. But they warned that it it wasn’t treated properly first, it could poison us.

That’s not why Georgia O’Keeffe chose it as the subject of a series of paintings.

She was looking for something to paint while she was in Lake George, and it caught her eye.


She observed it and imagined how she would fill a canvas with it.


Her series grew more abstract and larger in size, and she ended it with what she said was the most recognizable part of the plant, the jack.


She said that if we saw more than the flowering plant in her paintings, it was due to our own associations, our own projection.

Virgin goddess,

crescent goddess,


and bubbling beneath the surface, the eroticism of a hidden goddess.


Black iris by Georgia O’Keeffe

The Sun progresses one degree every year.

A friend of hers sent her drawings to Alfred Stieglitz in 1916, when her Sun had progressed to 22 degrees of Sag.

Stieglitz was a photographer. He owned a gallery in New York and exhibited her drawings.

In 1918, she moved to New York and he left his wife.

She dedicated herself to painting and he photographed her.

In 1921, he exhibited his photographs of her, intimate portraits and studies of her nude body.

He made her talent visible, and he made her physically visible, 

with her natal Sun anchored in Scorpio, and her progressed Sun in Sag.


Timed chart for Georgia O’Keeffe

Her chart pulled a man who opened doors for many artists, a man who loved people and the hustle and bustle of the city.


New York with moon by Georgia O’Keeffe

She preferred the country and solitude to paint.


Evening star No. VI by Georgia O’Keeffe

They were married in 1924, when her Sun had progressed to that liminal space of 0 degrees between two signs, between Sag and Capricorn.

She was his muse, visible in his gallery, working in his gallery,

and she used her own resources, her training and experimentation, to develop her art.

In whole signs, Saturn in Leo in the ninth house asked for mastery in her own style. The pressure to be distinct and true to herself.


Red canna III by Georgia O’Keeffe

They lived in New York and spent the summers in the Stieglitz family estate in Lake George. She found a shed somewhere in the fields to paint.

Then she discovered the desert of New Mexico and the bones in the desert.

With her progressed Sun firmly in Capricorn, she began spending her summers in New Mexico, alone.


Georgia O’Keeffe, photograph by Alfred Stieglitz, 1931

Mars in Virgo in the tenth house.

Leonardo da Vinci had Virgo in the tenth house. He worked on the Mona Lisa from 1503 to 1517. Every time he thought he was finished, he’d find a flaw.

He was freer in his personal notebooks. Less pressure to please a goddess.


Dike, goddess of justice, purity and precision, leaves the earth by Salvator Rosa, 1665

She couldn’t get away with not finishing. Mars in Virgo pressured her to finish, to complete. If she got it wrong, she destroyed the canvas and started again.


Pelvis with the distance by Georgia O’Keeffe

To get to the heart of it, with the least amount of details.


Pelvis IV by Georgia O’Keeffe

To exhaust the subject.


Red pelvis with yellow sky by Georgia O’Keeffe, 1945

Stieglitz died in 1946, and after she settled his affairs, she left New York and moved to New Mexico.

She traveled in the 1950s to oversee retrospectives of his work and hers. Her Moon is conjunct Mercury R in Scorpio, a public that never gets tired of her work and her story, infused with innocence and sexuality. An icon in her land.

In the 60s, with her progressed Sun in Aquarius, her work soared. She painted the Sky-above-clouds series, and From-the-plains series, what she had seen from the windows of airplanes, and what she had seen driving in the flat country of Texas, long ago, when she had been a teacher, before she met Stieglitz.

Her career as an artist began with a scandal. Her relationship with Stieglitz, a married man with Mars in Sag, 23 years her senior, his photographs of her, all caused a scandal in the art world.

She ended her career with a scandal.

In 1973, with her progressed Sun at 19 degrees Aquarius, she was seen with a man 58 years her junior.

She milked the scandal.


They say that Jupiter in the twelfth house is a guardian angel.

Juan Hamilton came into her life when she was losing her sight. He was running from a painful divorce, looking for a job, and she hired him to be her assistant.

He accompanied her on her walks in the landscape she loved. He helped her put together the paintings for the only book she published. He was in the only documentary she ever allowed to be made of her.

The book came out in 1976, and the documentary in 1977, during her third Saturn return.

With her progressed Sun in Aquarius, the focus of her book was on her work, her paintings, the subject matter, the arrangement of shapes and colours, a studio book for artists.

This was a time when the feminist art movement claimed her. Feminist artists like Judy Chicago invited her to the dinner table, but she refused the invitation.

Uranus is conjunct her midheaven in Libra in the eleventh house, and she refused to belong to any group, or to be called anything but Georgia O’Keeffe,

a singular artist.

Hamilton was by her side the last 13 years of her life. He was in the twelfth house, in the seventh, and why not in the fifth.

The fifth house speaks of how we parent. The fifth house speaks of the first child.

He was young enough to be the son, the grandson she never had, and she was old enough to be his grandmother.

They must have parented each other

in Aries.

He was a potter, and he introduced her to clay when painting was too hard.

She must have asked him to manage her estate, because she left him most of it.

The ruler of Aries is in Virgo, in the tenth house of career.


She died at the age of 98, with her progressed Sun between 1 and 2 degrees of Pisces.

Pisces in the fourth house of home.

Her family contested her will,


A storm by Georgia O’Keeffe

but the matter was settled amicably in a year’s time.

She lived 98 years and never had transiting Pluto oppose her natal Pluto. Transiting Pluto was at 7 degrees Scorpio when she died.

Pluto’s orbit has him spend more time in some signs than in others.


To experience a Pluto opposition to the natal Pluto is relatively rare.

It’s happening today to those born in the 1930s, an opportunity to study the transit.

It’s happening to two old men, Pope Francis and Seymour Hersh.

Pope Francis has thanked journalists for exposing the abuses of the church. If it weren’t for their investigative work, none of it would have come to light.


Chart for Pope Francis, born December 17, 1936, Buenos Aires. Data from birth record.

He became pope on March 13, 2013.

With his Sun anchored in Sag, and his progressed Sun at 13 degrees Pisces, he said that a good shepherd must smell like his sheep. As a result, he has chosen a lifestyle with less frills than previous popes.

He became pope with his progressed Sun conjunct Saturn in Pisces, across from Neptune in Virgo.

Saturn conjunct Neptune can dissolve structures.

Saturn across from Neptune can check on a structure, make corrections and bring change within a structure.

On August 24, 2006, with Saturn in Leo and Neptune in Aquarius, Pluto was classified a dwarf planet, and the solar system was reduced to eight planets.

With his progressed Sun conjunct Saturn in Pisces across from Neptune in Virgo, the Pope has been checking on the customs and traditions of the church. He’s been making corrections and bringing clarification, about who can and cannot say the traditional Latin Mass, who can and cannot receive communion.

Ephemerides tell us where Pluto was before 1930, but he was first seen on February 18, 1930, in Cancer. They had been looking for him. The wobbles in the orbits of Neptune and Uranus suggested the gravitational pull of another planet. It took study, calculations and the right equipment to find him.


We dig wherever Pluto is in the chart.

In the first house, it is the body and what we offer.

He said that he almost left the priesthood when he felt attraction for a girl. The ruler of Cancer is conjunct Venus in Aquarius in the eighth house. To rise above carnal love. The effort of celibacy.

Pluto can uproot, he can transform.

He’s become a powerful man, head of a lake, the Church, and he’s changed his name from Bergoglio to Francis, after St. Francis of Assisi.


St. Francis talking to the wolf of Gubbio by Carl Weidemeyer, 1911

There are the caves and the wildflowers of Arcadia in Capricorn, and the reeds of the marshlands of Mesopotamia.

There are gods who came to live on earth, who grew tired of toiling the land, and there is the god who created mankind to toil it for them, the god who finds a place for everyone.


and Pan who comforted Psyche when she tried to take her life,


by Max Klinger, 1890

and Pan who comforted Demeter when she couldn’t find her daughter.


by Frans Snyders, workshop of Rubens, 1615

The ruler of the seventh and the eighth is in Pisces.

Pisces breaks down boundaries, but Saturn puts limits on the boundaries the Pope can break.


He is being asked to say clearly what is and is not allowed.


They say that every planet has a different Siren in every minute of every degree of the zodiac. Together, they give a chart its individual song.

He began as a chemical technician in the food industry, and after an illness that almost took his life in 1957, he changed his path. He entered the Jesuit novitiate in 1958, when his Sun had progressed to 18 degrees of Capricorn, in a trine to Neptune in Virgo, and in a sextile to Saturn in Pisces.

They say that Mercury and Uranus rule astrology,

but to hear the sound of a chart, its music, Neptune opens the doors.

His Midheaven is in that liminal space between two signs, Aries and Taurus, and we can feel the tension between

wanting the Church to bless same sex unions, and following the dogma of the Church,

wanting to bring change, and being the guardian of its customs and traditions.


With the Moon and Venus in the eighth house in Aquarius, he faces his public without pretending that the Church has done no wrong.

His biggest strength is not to hide wrongdoings.

His biggest service is to get to the root of the problem, and improve the screening process of people entering religious life, life with the mysteries.

This is his singularity.

He is marked by the land he grew up in, the balancing act of being a Jesuit during Argentina’s military regime. Survival in dangerous times. Good works done secretly and strategically.


He became pope when transiting Pluto was in Capricorn, conjunct his natal Mercury.

There are structures that hold us up in Capricorn, and Pluto can uproot what is rotten in a structure, and the pope was about to participate in Plutonic work.

He became pope when transiting Neptune entered Pisces.

Transiting Neptune was conjunct his natal Saturn in 2019, the year he held the Protection-of-Minors-in-the-Church summit, and the year he abolished pontifical secrecy.


Photograph by Vincenzo Pinto, February 2019

In 2022, his Sun in Sag formed a square with his progressed Sun at 22 degrees Pisces.

Sag in his sixth house of work,

and Pisces in his ninth house of knowledge.

A First Nations delegation traveled from Canada to the Vatican, and he learned about the children of a foreign land, children sent to residential schools.

They presented him with symbolic moccasins.


Synastry chart with Pope Francis in the inner wheel and March 28, 2022 in the outer wheel

Transiting Pluto was at 28 degrees Capricorn, across from his natal Pluto in Cancer.

Shaman of the zodiac, arranging a meeting with the enemy.

Being seen as the enemy, the root to be uprooted.

Saturn in Pisces can feel the obligation to find answers. How can I repair this wrong?

Jupiter can free Saturn from finding the answers.

They told him what to do.

Come to Canada and bring back the moccasins with an apology from the Church.

There is force in a square,

and Pluto went retrograde to allow time to prepare for the second encounter.

Something new was beginning in the house of crisis, house of healing.

The pope had knee surgery, and as soon as he could, he traveled to Canada.


The pope praying at the Lac Ste. Anne pilgrimage site in Alberta, July 26, 2022. Photograph by Eric Gay

Synastry chart with Pope Francis in the inner wheel and July 24, 2022 in the outer wheel

Of the Uranus in Taurus generation.

Uranus in Taurus can unearth history,

and he unearthed unmarked graves in residential schools.

The pope took responsibility.

If he was looking for a sign of forgiveness, transiting Jupiter in Aries gave him a sign.

Jupiter, ruler of Sag and Pisces. There is pilgrimage in Sag, and Pisces can erase the barriers of time.


Pisces rules the feet,

and Aries rules the head.

To be seen as a friend,

a pope made chief.




Chart for the discovery of Pluto, February 18, 1930

The cultural practice of charity.

Pooling resources to rescue and aid.

We couldn’t see it yet, but it would give rise to institutional changes that would provide relief in times of crisis.

Transforming the homeland,

transforming the psychology of people.

Jupiter’s gifts don’t come easy.


Relief projects No. 62, British Columbia

In other lands, movements were forming to fight colonialism. Some were suppressed and some would continue to grow.


To break something down in Cancer and create something new in Aries.

Cancer, natural ruler of the Imum Coeli, the Nadir, the fourth house.

Aries, natural ruler of the Ascendant, the first house of birth.

Some say the fourth house describes the circumstances of death. We return to the fourth house when we are ill and when we die.

Some say the eighth house describes the circumstances of death.

The Moon, ruler of Cancer, is in Scorpio, natural ruler of the eighth house of death and rebirth.


Phoenix by Friedrich Justin Bertuch, 1806

Chart for Seymour Hersh, born April 8, 1937, Chicago. Data from birth record.

The fourth house, the eighth house and the twelfth house are the water houses of the chart. The  people who raise us are in the fourth, the remembered dead are in the eighth, and the unremembered dead are in the twelfth.

His water houses are busy houses.


He says that at age 13, with his Sun anchored in Aries, and his progressed Sun entering Taurus, he joined the book of the month club and signed up for nonfiction books. It cost 99 cents a month.

His parents were new immigrants from eastern Europe. They didn’t have a high school education, and here was their son helping out at their dry cleaning shop with a book.

Alien son. Neptune in the fourth house can bring a sense of alienation, and he can also bring spirituality. There are rites and rituals in Virgo, and he grew up with the rites and rituals of another land. There is putting things in order in Virgo, and there are teachings.

His favourite books were the ones that told him things they didn’t teach in his grammar school. He remembers being blown away by a book about the Habsburg monarchy, and a book about Chinese civilization.


In the twelfth house, house of secrets.

He knew things as a child that others didn’t know.

He relished in knowing things others didn’t know.

Neptune in Virgo lies across from the Moon in Pisces.

A mother loyal to the rites and rituals of her origins.

A son who is a patriot.

There can be patriotism here. The cultural practice of patriotism.


De Sphaera manuscript, illustration of the Moon by Cristoforo de Predis, 1470

Neptune in Virgo and the Moon in Pisces are at the bending of the nodes.

Ketu is on the Ascendant in Gemini, and Rahu is on the Descendant in Sag.


He describes himself as an aggressive learner.

Driven to do for his homeland.

He graduated with a history degree in 1958, and began his career as a journalist in 1959, with his progressed Sun conjunct Uranus.

No longer relishing in knowing what others didn’t know, but relishing in exposing what others didn’t know. Mercury joins the twelfth house to the first and brings it to the light.

Uranus asks for originality wherever he is in the chart.

Uranus with Mercury and Venus R can ask for original derivatives.

He delivered an original derivative of the Vietnam War in 1969, the My Lai massacre.

Venus R, morning or evening star, within 15 degrees of the Sun, is a Venus of the underworld.

He had difficulty publishing the piece, and that’s when he saw the quincunx to Mars in Sag, felt it. The thrill of breaking boundaries. It kept him alienated and patriotic.

People questioned his motives. If he was writing against the war, he was a commie.

He defended himself. He stood with his Sun in Aries and said,

The problem here is that the Sun that anchors me is in a trine to my IC in Leo, and in a sextile to my MC in Aquarius, and trines and sextiles can attract criticism from my fellow Americans. You think that when I look in the mirror, I’ve come to identify with the ideology of the enemy, and that’s not true. That’s not why I’ve written this piece.

You have to understand that my progressed Sun is now at 20 degrees Taurus, in a square to my IC and my MC, and I’m being forced to make you care about the souls of the soldiers we’ve sent to fight in Vietnam. Look what this war is doing to us. I’ve written this piece to be of service to my country.


De Sphaera manuscript, illustration of the Sun by Cristoforo de Predis, 1470

Between getting his history degree and starting his career as a journalist, he went to law school. This was the time when his progressed Sun was conjunct Uranus. He says he hated it and dropped out. There was something about law that didn’t suit his character. In a court of law, not every fact is admissible, and a fact can be dismissed because-

He chose a career where facts could be checked and published.

Let his readers be the judges.

Alien, patriot, right or wrong.


His house of apprenticeship and work is in Scorpio, and there is investigation in Scorpio, and the ruler is in Sag in the seventh house.

He checks his facts and his editors double check them.

He has a lawyer too.

During the brief time he spent in law school, he met the lawyer who’s been watching his back his entire career.

He does not publish what he’s advised not to publish. He says there’s a lot he leaves out.


De Sphaera manuscript, illustration of Mars by Cristoforo de Predis, 1470

In 1993, with his progressed Sun conjunct the Ascendant, he became a regular contributor to The New Yorker. He had published books and been awarded. He was known, established, the journalist crusader.

It was in The New Yorker that he published his piece on Abu Ghraib. With his progressed Sun at 23 degrees Gemini, in a square to Saturn in Pisces, he made the invisible visible.

Gemini can open doors to invisible worlds.

If we want to understand what the word humiliation means, we can look at a picture of Abu Ghraib and read his words.

In the interviews he gave during this time, he practised self censorship. He stuck to what he had written, what had been fact checked.

There is influence in his chart.

Pluto is in Cancer in his second house of resources, digging in the homeland, finding riches in matters of the homeland.

Jupiter is in Capricorn, spreading what he finds. In the eighth house, what he finds can create a crisis in the highest levels of government.

There are the laws of a country in this polarity, but the piece on Abu Ghraib, like the piece on My Lai, went beyond the laws of the United States.

They touched his IC and MC. There are individual rights and human rights in the Leo Aquarius polarity.


De Sphaera manuscript, illustration of Saturn by Cristoforo de Predis, 1470

In 2013, age 76, his Sun had progressed to 1 degree of Cancer.

In Gemini there are twins that share their mortality and immortality. Gemini asks that we hold at least two points of view. Consider the other side.

In Cancer Karkinos sacrificed his life for Hera because she had been wronged. One point of view. Absolute loyalty.

In 2013 he wrote an article about Syria, how the Syrian army may not have been responsible for the chemical weapon attack on Ghouta. The New Yorker would not publish it. No one would pick it up in the United States.

The same would happen with the article he wrote about the killing of Osama bin Laden in 2015. In it he claimed that the United States and Pakistan lied about the circumstances leading to bin Laden’s death.

Both articles relied entirely on anonymous sources.

His progressed Sun in Cancer was in a square to Saturn in Pisces and he was being censored.

His progressed Sun was in a sextile to the stellium in Taurus. Mercury can join the twelfth house to the first, and he can pull the first house into the twelfth.

There is exile in the twelfth.

Transiting Pluto had entered Capricorn, and transiting Uranus had entered Aries.

Pluto was breaking something down in the eighth house of crisis and healing, and other people’s resources. Anonymous resources, no matter how high up in the military or government, or anywhere else, were not being accepted.

Uranus was creating something new in his solar house, the eleventh house of the groups he belongs to.

There is exile in the twelfth, and retirement.

He wrote a memoir.


Censored, and at the same time, recognized as a resource in the world of journalism.

There is expertise in Leo, and in Aquarius is what he has to offer.


De Sphaera manuscript, illustration of Mercury by Cristoforo de Predis, 1470

De Sphaera manuscript, illustration of Venus by Cristoforo de Predis, 1470

In 2022, his progressed Sun in Cancer and Saturn in Pisces ended the square. They were in an orb of more than 10 degrees.

In 2023, with his Sun anchored in Aries, his progressed Sun at 11 degrees Cancer is in a trine to the Moon in Pisces.

A public that can judge him as patriot or traitor.

Transiting Jupiter is in Aries. On February 8, Jupiter was at 7 degrees Aries, conjunct his natal Sun, when he published a story on Substack, How America took out the Nord Stream Pipeline.

Transiting Mars is in Gemini. On February 8, Mars was at 12 degrees Gemini, conjunct his Ascendant, when his story made a war in the heavens visible.


Photograph: Danish Defence

His story is self published. It relies on an anonymous source and cannot be fact checked.

The United States government calls it complete fiction and utterly false.


Synastry chart for Seymour Hersh in the inner wheel and February 8, 2023 in the outer wheel


If he can dig in the homeland, the government can dig in his eighth house, and he has the obligation to protect his sources.

Jupiter is the great protector in the sky.


De Sphaera manuscript, illustration of Jupiter by Cristoforo de Predis, 1470

Pluto in Capricorn and Uranus in Taurus formed a trine with an orb of 10 degrees on June 26, 2022. Pluto was at 27 degrees Capricorn and Uranus at 17 degrees Taurus.

They never formed an exact trine because Uranus retrograded. The tightest trine they formed had an orb of 8 degrees between August 5 and October 12, 2022.

Breaking something down in Capricorn and creating something new in Taurus..

There are the bones that hold us up in Capricorn, and in Taurus there are resources and the containers of our resources.

In June 2022 Russia began to reduce gas supplies through Nord Stream 1, and in late August, it shut it down completely.

By then Germany had found other suppliers and began to consider other energy sources, 

and also fell back on the old, woodstoves and coal.

On September 26, there were leaks in Nord Stream 1 and 2, and seismologists detected explosions under the sea in the same area.


Chart for September 26, 2022

Pluto and Uranus were in a grand trine with Virgo and Libra.

There is an underworld in Virgo. Persephone of the underworld and Persephone of the upperworld.

There is Themis in Libra whose whisper can send ripples that bring the end of an age and the beginning of a new one.

By February 4, 2023, Pluto and Uranus were in an orb greater than 10 degrees.


Chart for February 4, 2023

The Moon in Leo called for expertise to shoot down a foreign object in the sky, spying on the United States.

She was at 5 degrees Leo, and although the president meant to send a clear message of no trespassing,

people had fun with the story.

Venus in Pisces was in an applying square to Mars in Gemini,

and Venus in Pisces was in an applying sextile to Uranus in Taurus.

The tension of a square not yet consumed.

The playfulness of a sextile not yet consumed.


Mercury and Pluto were in a wide conjunction, with Mercury applying.

Four days later

Mercury and Pluto were conjunct with an orb of 2 degrees.

It was the day Hersh claimed to have solved the mystery of the pipelines.

The government said it was false and didn’t answer questions.

No trespassing meant no trespassing.


Chart for February 8, 2023

The Venus and Mars square had been consumed,

and the Venus and Uranus sextile had been consumed.

The Moon was in Virgo correcting mistakes,

in a trine to Capricorn where there are laws, breaches of the law,

in a trine to Taurus where there can be security concerns,

forming a kite with Venus and Neptune in Pisces where there is a war in the heavens.

Venus can shapeshift in Pisces.

A balloon, a UFO.

There is rescue in Gemini, retribution, Helen of Sparta and Helen of Troy.

There are ideals and ideologies in Aquarius.


Jupiter and Chiron are conjunct in Aries, leadership to protect and mind the gap in survival.

Saturn is in that liminal place of 0 degrees between Aquarius and Pisces.

Pluto will make his first entry into Aquarius on March 24

and Mars will enter Cancer on March 26.

The winds are changing.


Chart for October 7, 1952

Mary Badham was born this day in Birmingham, Alabama.

She was about to turn 10, when her mother asked her father if she could take little Mary to audition for the part of Scout in the film To kill a Mockingbird.

“No,” he said.

They say that the Sun is the father in a child’s chart, and the Sun and Saturn are conjunct in Libra in Mary’s chart. The Sun Saturn in Libra can find joy in the principles of a society, and adhere closely to social norms, and it wasn’t normal to pull a child out of school to be in a film.

But the mother was holding little Mary’s chart, and the Sun had progressed to 22 degrees 33 minutes of Libra, conjunct Neptune, and the Sun Neptune can dissolve the restrictions that Saturn imposes.

She said, “Now, Henry dear, what are the chances the child will get the part anyway?”

When To Kill a Mockingbird was released, Mary’s progressed Sun was conjunct Mercury.


She got an Oscar nomination for her performance.

There is structure in the stellium in Libra, and Neptune and Mercury can add lyricism, artistry.

She was still too young to know what this role would mean in her life, that it would become her job in life.

In an interview, she mentions going to New York to talk to kids in a last-chance-school, kids who’d been in scrapes with the law. They had been introduced to Harper Lee’s book and the film.

She has spoken in schools and colleges all around the country.

She met Harper Lee.

She says that her parents died when she was young, and Gregory Peck and his wife became her surrogate parents, checking in on her. Gregory Peck always called her Scout, and she, Atticus.

The questions people ask her are never really about her. They are about the film, making the film, working with Gregory Peck. Did he have the same beliefs as Atticus? What about her? Was she like Scout?

“Yes, very much so,” she says.

Pluto works at a psychological level.

When people ask her questions, they ask them to a Scout all grown up.

There is copyright in Leo

and she has earned the rights to Scout

to be of service to the children of her country.

In 2018, with her progressed Sun at 19 degrees 54 minutes of Sag, conjoining her Mars, and in a sextile to her Sun anchored in Libra, she was offered the role of Mrs. Dubose in a stage production of To Kill a Mockingbird.

She hesitated. She had never been anything but Scout, and she had never acted on stage before.

She accepted it. She had been given a skin, and she could now take it off.

A gift given, a gift given back.

Both times, the film and the stage production, her progressed Sun was in a quincunx to Jupiter in Taurus.

There is cultural heritage in Taurus.

She has added to her cultural heritage.

Venus joins Libra and Taurus to Scorpio.

She is a part of it.



Ludmilla Tourischeva was born on this day in Grozny, Russia.

At the World Cup in London in 1975, the bars collapsed the moment she finished her routine.


She would turn 23 that year. Her Sun anchored in Libra, and her progressed Sun at 6 degrees 30 minutes of Scorpio, conjunct her Venus.

She held back her tears, and what people saw was

discipline, control, composure, serenity.

Libra is the first social sign of the zodiac, conscious of others.

Venus joins Libra to Scorpio, the sign of Artemis, and hidden beneath the surface, a pool of emotion.

So different from the Cancer Sun, ruled by the Moon. Solar Cancerians can’t hide their emotions.


The recognition of her abilities and her training began with her progressed Sun in Libra.

There is trade in Gemini, the pooling of resources in Aquarius, and sponsorship in Libra, the sponsorship of a parent, the sponsorship of the state.

Her international competitions began with her progressed Sun in Scorpio. There is clan in Scorpio, and she was always a member of the Soviet Union team.

She says that the team trained in Minsk for the 1972 Olympics in Munich. Arrangements were made for the team to have the palace of sports all to themselves for a month. Venus across from Jupiter in Taurus can make arrangements to procure resources.

War generals came to tell them that they had won the war with Germany, and now it was their turn to win. Not winning would mean that they were criminals.

Venus can walk war generals from Libra to Scorpio. In Libra, the drop of an apple rippled into a war.

She was head of the team in 1972, the year a younger team member, Olga Korbut, captured the spotlight with her expressiveness. Was she jealous?

No, she says.

She must have done work with Pluto in Leo during this time, admitting to herself what she was capable and not capable of doing, what was true to her and what wasn’t,

and with this knowledge, she focused on the competition and galloped to reach her goals.

Pluto in Leo is in a trine to Mars in Sag.

An early representation of Sagittarius shows a winged centaur with a stinger and an erect phallus, the head of a man looking forward, and the head of a beast guarding his back. He charges with a bow and arrow, the bow taut, the arrow ready to fly.


Pluto and Mars sextile Libra.

The stellium in Libra is in a square to Uranus in Cancer. There is a lake of memories in Cancer, and Uranus can ask for originality wherever he is in the chart. The square can push to leave an original mark in the lake.


At the 1976 Olympics, the year she retired, she congratulated the Romanian champion Nadia Comaneci who scored a perfect 10 on bars.

Role model.



In 1977 she married Valeriy Borzov and they made Kyiv their home.

Her progressed Sun was at 22 degrees 34 minutes of Scorpio when Ukraine declared its independence in 1991. Her Sun anchored in Libra, and her progressed Sun in a square to Pluto in Leo.

There is hearthfire in Leo. The Soviet Union had been hearthfire to her, and now it was Ukraine. She says that she helped fertilize the gymnastics federation in Ukraine, and they formed a national team.

The borders were open and the coaches were leaving, looking for better prospects, but she managed to persuade some of the leading coaches to stay for a year or two to train the team.

Her name carried weight, and she used her name to get sponsors. They needed to prepare the reserves to ensure the sport had the equipment it needed.

Like others, she has lamented the breakup of the Soviet Union, that centralized machine that had means and gave athletes a reason beyond the material to excel.

But her hopes are with Ukraine, to see the athletic traditions continue there.


October 7 1952 began with the Moon at 27 degrees Taurus and ended with the Moon at 10 degrees Gemini.

The Moon can say something about the public.

To Kill a Mockingbird opens doors to discussion. It is taught in schools and has taken Mary Badham to schools.

There are judges in a competition. Athletes that have excelled in the past can become the judges in a competition. In Gemini, Athena picked exemplary citizens to be the judges in the trial of Orestes. Ludmilla Tourischeva has been picked to be a judge in women’s artistic gymnastics.

A chatty Moon in Gemini.

A nurturing Moon in Taurus.

The Moon in Taurus can be a localized Moon. It can speak of a public that shares the chart holder’s heritage, or is drawn to it. It can speak of a public drawn to the chart holder’s resources.

October 7 1952 began with Leo rising and ended with Leo rising.

A Taurus Moon could have a Leo rising or a Virgo rising.

A Gemini Moon could have a Virgo to Leo rising, any of the twelve signs.


Vladimir Putin was born on this day in Leningrad, now St. Petersburg, Russia.

His first presidential term began in 2000, with his Sun anchored in Libra, and his progressed Sun at 1 degree 39 minutes of Sag.

His current and fourth presidential term will end in 2024, with his progressed Sun at 26 degrees and 1 minute of Sag, conjunct his Mars.

He could run for two more terms, 6 years each, until 2036, age 84, the year of his Uranus return, and the year transiting Pluto at 19 degrees Aquarius will oppose his natal Pluto in Leo.

His natal Pluto is with Ketu in Leo,

and Jupiter in Taurus is at the bending of the nodes.

On his birthday in 2014, the year Russia annexed Crimea, a showspace in Moscow celebrated him with the exhibit, The 12 Labours of Putin.


Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 2022, and on September 26 2022, explosions damaged the nord stream pipelines. On this day, transiting Uranus was at 18 degrees 30 minutes of Taurus, conjunct his natal Jupiter.

A nurturing Moon with Jupiter in Taurus can grow dependent, create dependency.

Uranus can ask for independence.

Uranus conjunct Jupiter across from Venus in Scorpio can create new patterns to replace old ones.

In Taurus there is the story of a king who depended on a bull to rule. He did not sacrifice the bull back to the gods, and in return was given the responsibility of the minotaur.

In Leo there is the story of a demigod who atoned with labours to reach the heavens.

Cancer asked him to take a break and fall back into the lake, but when he fell back, his natal Uranus was swimming in the lake, asking him to be original.

Cancer ruled by the Moon in Taurus can be original with the resources of a clan.

Cancer ruled by the Moon in Gemini can be original opening doors to break boundaries.

There is heritage in Taurus, the preservation of heritage.


There was a promise in the past that NATO would not encroach on eastern Europe. Unwritten. Unsigned.


Chart for October 7, 1952, St. Petersburg, Russia, timed

Putin of the upperworld and Putin of the underworld. Single in the upperworld, and his life in the underworld is off limits.

There is artistry in his second house of resources. Neptune is at a lower degree than Mercury, and Neptune can hide effort, disguise, Neptune Mercury can play with words, replace words with visuals, say one thing and mean another.

Russia didn’t declare war on Ukraine. Russia conducted military exercises, and Ukraine and Ukraine’s supporters prepared for war.

War is not foreign to him. He has knowledge of war from his parents’ experience. To fight for the homeland, labour for the homeland were values instilled in him early on.

He studied law and economics, linked to his country. Jupiter in the ninth can attract mentors, and he himself can become a mentor, like no other, distinct in his land.

There are principles in Libra, and Uranus in Cancer in a square to Libra can create principles, break principles. His mentor Anatoly Sobchak was a co author of Russia’s constitution, and he has made amendments.

The ruler of the eighth house is in the fourth, and he has taken the lead in managing his country’s resources.

Pisces is in his seventh house, and he has a way of springing things on his allies.


In 2013 his progressed Sun in Sag began to form exact sextiles to his planets in Libra,  starting with the Sun and ending with Mercury in 2022.

In 2014, Russia annexed Crimea,

and they say his popularity at home soared. Venus in Scorpio across from Jupiter and the Moon in Taurus can depend on the love of her public.


Chart for March 21, 2014, timed to match the rising sign of the chart for October 7, 1952

His eleventh house of the groups that he belongs to is in Cancer. He belongs to a group that protects borders. NATO is such a group, but he does not belong to NATO. Uranus in Cancer is a group on its own.

In 2014, Jupiter was conjunct his natal Uranus in Cancer,

in a square to Mars in Libra conjoining his natal planets in Libra.

Uranus can break and create

and Jupiter can fertilize.

He broke the principle of sovereignty,

and he may have created something new, formed a pact, a hidden pact.

Neptune at a lower degree than Mercury can hide.

Mercury at a lower degree than Neptune is in the open. With Mercury Neptune in Pisces in the seventh house, he openly annexed Crimea.

Mercury ruler of Virgo in the first and Gemini in the tenth, the work he came to do.

He says he is correcting a mistake, the mistake of a promise left unwritten and unsigned.

If there is no longer a Warsaw Pact, why is there NATO.

If there is NATO, there should be a Warsaw Pact.


In Gemini there are Castor and Pollux holding each other’s chart, and Helen and Clytemnestra who do not hold each other’s chart. Undifferentiated and differentiated.

Helen had many suitors, and Odysseus told her father Tyndareus that he would help solve the problem of the suitors if Tyndareus spoke highly of him to Penelope’s parents.

Done, said Tyndareus.

Make the suitors agree to swear an oath of allegiance to the man Helen chooses as her husband.

The Oath of Tyndareus.

Helen took it to Libra.

There is Themis of the scales in Libra, prophetess, careful not to disturb the order of things.

There is Themis of the claws in Libra, Eris, letting the apple drop to rearrange the order of things.

Venus was in Aquarius across from Putin’s natal Pluto in Leo, and the world accused him of violating international laws, and he said that he was being faithful, he was saving his people, people who share the same heritage and belong to the same clan, undifferentiated. He was freeing them from oppressors.

Uranus was in Aries, in a square to Cancer trining Libra.

If there was a pact, it involved the management of his country’s resources 

in an emergency.

Mars in Sag, with the ruler of Sag in the ninth house, is a country that relies on foreign lands.

In 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine.


Chart for February 24, 2022, timed to match the rising sign of the chart for October 7, 1952

He started a war with Jupiter and Neptune in Pisces. The traditional ruler and the modern ruler in their sign.

Earth can materialize a war in the heavens

with a powerful enemy,

as powerful as the country he is paid to run.

They can both erase the line between us and the unremembered dead.


They can both shape shift. Allies, open enemies, allies, open enemies.

They say he thought he could take Kyiv and topple the government in 1,2,3. If that is what he thought, then he didn’t see things clearly, he miscalculated.

Neptune in his second house of resources can give illusions, make things foggy.

Pisces is in his seventh house, and just like he can spring things on his allies and open enemies, they can spring things on him.


Chart for September 26, 2022, timed to match the rising sign of the chart for October 7, 1952

If he was looking for an opportunity to shape shift back into an ally of the west, he missed it. Jupiter had made his first entry into Aries..

With Mars transiting Gemini, Ukraine has fought back, differentiating itself from Russia.

Mars has been in opposition to Putin’s natal Mars in Sag, blocking movement with sanctions and frozen assets.

But Mars in Sag needs an exit,

and in Gemini there are front doors, back doors, and exceptions.


More and more western companies have closed their doors in Russia, and those reluctant to close have felt the pressure.


Pepsi, the first taste of America in Russia, has felt the pressure.


Saturn can bring out the retro in Aquarius.

Mars in Gemini and Saturn in Aquarius have been in a trine to Putin’s natal stellium in Libra, and trines can show support and disapproval from those close to him, the people who work for him and the people he works for.

Today, Saturn is in Pisces,

and Mars is finishing his transit in Gemini. On April 30, he will be conjunct his natal Uranus in Cancer. Venus will be in Gemini, and Mercury will be in Taurus.

Mid May, Jupiter will enter Taurus, beginning his Jupiter return. Jupiter will be conjunct his natal Jupiter in April 2024, the year his progressed Sun will be conjunct his natal Mars.

In Virgo there is a goddess who walked in the margins and worked as a servant. A goddess who made the earth barren when she couldn’t find her daughter. People were starving and Jupiter heard their pleas, and he sent Mercury to the underworld to negotiate with Hades. Hades agreed to send Persephone back, but he fed her pomegranate seeds before she left and tied her to him. He said, You will spend half the year with your mother and half with me.

It’s not about winning.


Timed chart for Volodymyr Zelenskyy, born January 25, 1978, Kryvyi Rih, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union, now Ukraine, data from memory

Let’s reach for inspiration.


Mercury, ruler of the first house and the fourth house, is in Capricorn.

He joins Zelenskyy and his home and homeland to the eighth house of crisis and healing, and other people’s resources. It is the house of all that is taboo, and the house of crime. In Capricorn it has to do with the structures that hold us up and the laws that protect us.

With his caduceus, Mercury can wander into dangerous realms, the realm of oligarchs and rigged elections.


Saturn, ruler of Capricorn, joins the eighth to the third house of the village that raises us, media and communications, in Leo.

Third house resources.

They say that in 2003, with his progressed Sun at 29 degrees 59 minutes of Aquarius, he and some school friends founded Kvartal 95 Studio to provide local entertainment.

He entertained his audience with the kind of humour he grew up with, grassroots humour, and with what was going on in their country, beneath the surface, eighth house matters.


The Sun anchored in Aquarius, and the progressed Sun in the last degree of Aquarius, in the ninth house, across from Saturn in Leo.

Entertainment and education.

The stage can give courage to touch on the taboo.

He makes reference to the village that has raised him, people in his village, but the themes are universal, abuse of power is universal.


Enki finds a place for everyone, even for an unemployed relative.

There is charisma in the chart. The Sun Venus at 5 degrees Aquarius can have universal appeal.

The conjunction is in opposition to Mars retrograding from Leo to Cancer, and there is pressure here to confront eighth house matters directly.

To rescue the homeland,

to use his personal resources to rescue the homeland caught in the eighth house.

The Moon joins Leo with Cancer,

and his personal resources are linked to his entertainment company,

Kvartal 95 Studio,

A servant of the people.

There is a goddess who became a servant in Virgo, and there are the people in Gemini.

He registered the name of his series, A servant of the people, as a political party, and on December 31, 2018, he announced his candidacy for the 2019 presidential elections.

He became president of Ukraine with his progressed Sun at 16 degrees of Pisces, in a square to the rulers of Pisces, Jupiter in Gemini and Neptune in Sag.

There is popularity here.

Jupiter is vast and Jupiter can have influence.

Jupiter and Pluto can have the kind of influence that penetrates and changes the weave of a fabric.

Jupiter and Neptune can have popularity. They can rally people in one direction.



Mars has been transiting Gemini in his first house, and Mars can energize and Mars can enflame. He can show restraint and be more strategic when he is retrograde, but he is now flying direct. He is conjunct Zelenskyy’s natal Jupiter in the last degrees of Gemini,

and with this conjunction, Zelenskyy thanks the United States and Europe,


points out protractions, delays,


and completes differentiating Ukraine from Russia. There is no turning back and no room for negotiations.

He has a stubborn reputation.

Before the Russian invasion, there were agreements that rose from meetings called the Normandy Format. They asked that the Ukrainian government engage in dialogue with separatists in the Donbas region,

and he refused.


He was born when the spirit of the times was in Scorpio,

and there is clan in Scorpio,

and there can be betrayal,

and he refused to betray his clan.

Guardian of his clan.

Guardian of the children of his clan.

His progressed Mars retrograded into Cancer and turned direct in 2014, a year before the release of his series A servant of the people. Today his progressed Mars is at 22 degrees Cancer,

and his natal Mars at 0 degrees between Cancer and Leo.

Mars at the entrance of Leo, Mars at the gate,

in that space in between, that liminal space that Mercury rules.

Mars Lamassu.


Chart for March 20, 2023, timed to match the rising sign of Zelenskyy’s chart

Transiting Jupiter was at 16 degrees Aries, in exact opposition to his natal Pluto in Libra, when he made the recordings on March 20 and March 23.

He digs in Libra, digs up what isn’t working,

and in his chart, the ruler of Libra is conjunct his Sun in Aquarius.

International principles and international laws.

He calls on the world to expand sanctions against Russia and to uphold them to the letter.

He calls on the International Criminal Court to establish a special tribunal to punish Russia’s aggression.

He wants Russia’s seized assets to be put to good use in Ukraine.

Never mind the global economy.

Never mind Russia’s nuclear power.

Never mind diplomacy and saving face.

The willingness to sacrifice.


Transiting Pluto is making his entry into Aquarius. He will be between 29 degrees of Capricorn and 1 degree of Aquarius all of 2023 and 2024,

in opposition to his natal Mars Lamassu.

He has been fighting a power greater than his to protect Ukraine.

He has been fighting for an international structure that will protect it,

and to be officially a part of the European Union.

Pluto is between his eighth house of crisis and ninth house of wisdom.

In Capricorn there is a flood. When people grew too noisy on earth, the gods sent a flood. In Capricorn there can be panic.

Taiwan 21:39    youtube.com/watch?v=RqnOVJ1XjOc&t=1651s

In Aquarius we can rise above to see the global economy, the distribution of raw material and resources, the shifts of power a war can create.

In a war, Aquarius can rise above to see where the enemy will hurt the most.

Transiting Pluto is conjunct his natal Sun Venus in Aquarius, with an orb of 5 degrees, applying.

Pluto’s gravitational pull is strong, and he can take us under, to work with him, transform our goals, refine them.

In his chart, Saturn, ruler of Capricorn and Aquarius, is in Leo, and in Leo there is Hera’s wrath against Hercules, blamed for Jupiter’s adultery. There is the madness she brought upon him, and his labours. He laboured with Athena by his side, for a king who hid in a barrel.

In Leo there is what is most difficult, forgiveness. There is forgiveness, reconciliation and a marriage.

Ganymede took Phoebe’s place as cup bearer,

and Phoebe, daughter of Jupiter and Hera, married Hercules.

But right now he’s not willing to forgive a thing.

All he wants to do is win.


On May 21, Zelenskyy will have a Mars return.


Chart for May 21, 2023, timed to match Zelenskyy’s rising sign

The G7 Summit is scheduled to take place during this time in Hiroshima, Japan.

He was a virtual guest at the G7 Summit in June 2022, when transiting Jupiter and Mars were in Aries.

This time he may be a guest in person.

In his chart, the Moon and Saturn are in Leo, and he labours to keep his public’s attention.

On May 21, the Moon will be transiting Gemini, conjunct his natal Jupiter, and he may have a live audience, undifferentiated in its beliefs.

In his chart, a Mars return triggers that space in between that is Mercurial, and attending a summit would be appropriate.

With Mars and Pluto in a square to Jupiter and Mercury in Taurus,

the topics discussed could be national and international structures that ensure security, national and international structures that punish breaches of security.

Territorial integrity and the preservation of heritage could also be topics,

and technology,

resources and the containers of our resources,

the earth and the body.

With the ruler of Taurus in Cancer, there can be talk of the stories that bring a nation together, there can be talk of a membership that brings nations together, there can be talk of protecting borders.

Venus in Cancer is in a trine to Saturn in Pisces,

in Zelenskyy’s second house and tenth house,

and trines can support and trines can discipline.

If he asks his partners for membership to the EU, they may give him a set of conditions.

If he asks for resources to escalate the war, they may give him a set of conditions.

There is something decisive about this time period, with Mars and Pluto at the bending of the nodes, and Jupiter and Mercury with Rahu in Taurus.

The work is in Scorpio.


Timed chart for Joe Biden, born November 20, 1942, Scranton, PA, data from memory

He says that they have to put Ukrainians in a position where they can make advances this spring and summer, going into the fall, to move to a place where they can negotiate from a position of strength.


He completed the oath of office and became president on January 20, 2021, at 11:49 am.


Chart for January 20, 2021, 11:49 am, Washington D.C.

The placement of the Moon seems to say something about a president’s task.

When George W. Bush became president, the transiting Moon was at 19 degrees Sag, across from his natal Uranus and Rahu in Gemini.

Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists.

When Barack Obama became president, the transiting Moon was at 29 degrees Scorpio, conjunct his MC in Scorpio.


When Donald Trump became president, the transiting Moon was at 9 degrees Scorpio, in a square to his natal Pluto in Leo.

A cult of personality.

When Joe Biden became president, the transiting Moon was at 28 degrees 57 minutes of Aries, conjunct his natal Moon in Taurus, in a square to Jupiter in Cancer in the eighth house.

He has suffered tragedies in his life, and his sixth house, his place of work, the people he works with, have supported him and encouraged him to continue, not to quit.

The transiting Moon in Aries during his inauguration asks that he take the lead in a crisis.

They say he appeals to the working class, works for middle America.

Aquarius is in his third house, and there is service in the sign, and the rulers are in Gemini, with Uranus at a lower degree.

He makes gaffes and stumbles, like any ordinary person in his clan, and his maladroitness makes him approachable, unthreatening,

until there’s a crisis.

The Moon in Aries and in Taurus are in a square to Jupiter in Cancer, and Pluto in Leo,

and in a crisis, there is right and wrong, a moral crossroads.