When I first began studying astrology, I fairly percolated with interest. I couldn’t read enough books, look at enough charts, or learn enough techniques to satisfy my curiosity.
Now that my days are defined by the struggle to keep my head above water in a sea of astrology work, it’s easy to lose track of what once made astrology itself so fascinating to me. It’s not that feel I know enough about the subject; I never will. It’s that most of my time spent with the subject requires me to display what I know about it—and that leaves little time for indulging my curiosity about what I don’t know.
Gemini is the sign that delights in collecting shiny little pieces of information, turning them over this way and that like sea glass salvaged from a beach. Gemini lives in the bird that builds nests from random bits of twig, string, or even discarded wire, the artist who creates sculpture from found objects, and the writer who knits together words based simply on the delightful ways they strike her fancy.
There is a playful quality to archetypal Gemini. Can you remember being a small child, learning to read and write, drawing pictures, figuring out how things worked? Nearly everything was new, engrossing, and delightful.
Some of us lose the gift of delight as the years go by. In the grown-up world, so much depends on being regarded as knowledgeable, even expert, in ways that will help you win a political argument or be considered more valuable in your job. Too often, information that bears out the flaws in one’s logic or a competitor’s superior skill is treated as a shameful nuisance to be swept under a rug, rather than an exciting new toy to challenge the brain and delight the imagination.
For kids of my generation, the Sun’s Gemini season marked the beginning of summer vacation. It meant liberation from homework, assigned reading, and exams, and initiated a full three months of mental play. I spent late May and most of June letting my long-suppressed curiosity run wild, reading books, playing in the fields, listening to records, and catching up on mindless afternoon television. There was such freedom, then, to pay attention to what caught my fancy. There was no pressure to involve myself in extra-curricular activities that would improve a far-away college application, no summer school—nothing but dreaming, reading, writing little stories, and thinking for fun.
I felt exactly the opposite this morning, tiredly throwing myself into my office chair at 6:30 a.m. to try to come up with an essay for the Gemini New Moon. When it’s hard to write, I know that I’ve been doing too much talking and writing and too little replenishment of the imaginative well. Time to schedule a little bit of a mental vacation, I think, though my office calendar begs to differ. Most grownups I know don’t get to enjoy luxurious, three-month mental recesses.
Occasionally, that backs up on a person, with unfortunate consequences. Mars is in Gemini, too, at this New Moon, and in an opposition to Saturn. As Mars squared my natal Mars, I managed to hoist myself on my own petard with a series of emails to someone I respect and hold dear, emails that embodied the most regrettable shadow voice of Saturn in Sagittarius—a tone of know-it-all ass-holiness. Why, I thought with exasperation, would my friend not acknowledge my point of view? It took a full twelve hours and several testy emails for me to realize the reason, which is that I was being a jerk.
But there’s a reason for everything, if not always an excuse. I think I was being a jerk because I ached with the fatigue of being expected to know all the answers, make unpopular decisions, and be the person in charge. Instead of heeding my inner sundial, turning off the computer, and heading for the library to stock up on some brain food, I forged ahead with my grownup things, getting crankier and more Saturn-dour by the day.
Well, spirit of Gemini: message received. Though my calendar is filled with grown-up duties and chores in the coming weeks, there are some quiet spaces in there that I intend to set aside for Gemini. There will be books, trips to the lighthouse and to the park, and catching up with friends (including yesterday’s phone chat with a longtime friend who made me laugh so hard I couldn’t breathe).
For you, I wish a little (or a lot) of the same. During the Gemini New Moon cycle, I hope you’re able to carve out some unstructured playtime to let your mind wander, to follow whims and glimmers of fascination, and to let yourself think—just for fun.
© 2017 April Elliott Kent