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TRANSCRIPT Ep. 113 | Not a Poet (and Don’t I Know It!)

Transcript: EPISODE 113
Sun conjunct Neptune: Not a Poet (and Don’t I Know It!)

Listen to the episode and read show notes here

Welcome to The Big Sky Astrology Podcast, with your host, Astrologer and author, April Elliott Kent.

April: Hello invisible friends, this is April. And the date today is March 7th, 2022. Welcome to Episode 113 of The Big Sky Astrology Podcast.

Now, it’s a relatively quiet week in the big sky, but in this episode, we’ll be looking at Mercury entering Pisces, the Sun coming together in its annual conjunction with Neptune, the Gemini First Quarter Moon and void-of-course Moon periods and a fun little mini lesson on working with the planets in your birth chart.

Mercury enters Pisces

Mercury enters Pisces this week on March 9th at 05:32 PM Pacific Time, and will be in Pisces through March 26th. Pisces is one of the signs of Mercury’s detriment, which is to say, it is considered to be a difficult sign for Mercury to do its job in. And what is Mercury’s job? Mercury’s job is the handling of information and communication. So, it’s about taking in information from the environment, processing it in some way, and then turning back around and expressing it back out into the environment. Mercury does extremely well in the signs of Gemini and Virgo, but it struggles quite a bit in Pisces and Sagittarius. So, this doesn’t mean that there’s anything inherently wrong with Mercury in these signs, it just means that it has to get its work done in a slightly different way.

In Pisces, Mercury talks about possibly that comes to us in ways that are difficult to explain or understand. So, this would be psychic channels perhaps, or what we might call intuition. In Pisces, Mercury needs a lot of downtime, a lot of kind of relaxation and breathing room to do its best processing work. It processes things really well when we sleep when, we daydream, when we’re meditating. And then in terms of putting the information back out into the world, Pisces is kind of a poet. It doesn’t necessarily arrange information in a logical sequential way. So Mercury in Pisces is a strong placement for people who are poets, who are songwriters, who like to express themselves in a way that is not straightforward. You would not ask a Mercury in Pisces person necessarily to write a user’s manual for something at work. It’s not that they can do it, but it is not where their strengths lie.

So, while Mercury is going through Pisces through March 26th, it’s a really good time for letting our minds have a little bit of a vacation to the extent that we can. So, instead of troubleshooting problems with something on your computer, it might be something more along the lines of, well, here is the time I’m going to get ahead and caught up on some kind of creative project that I like to do. You know, it’s interesting because I’ve been a writer ever since I can remember, and it including being a songwriter for many years, and yet I’ve never really liked poetry at all. My apologies to all the poets out there, because I imagine there are some. But having said that, the way I write about astrology, for those of you who are familiar with my website and now doing a lot of artwork, a lot of digital collage to go along with that writing, is really actually quite poetic, I suppose. It is a way of trying to use storytelling and imagination to get some of these concepts across. And yet I don’t think of myself as a fan of poetry or definitely, really, a poet myself.

But I think for all of us, for this period of time between March 9th and March 26th, while Mercury is in Pisces, we all come kind of need to be poets in order to get our point across or in order to learn and take in and absorb information in the way we need to. And to a great extent, that means leading with the heart and listening with our hearts and processing with our hearts and then speaking in a way that is kind and imaginative. It’s not always second nature to those of us who have a stronger kind of Mercury, like Mercury and a fire sign, which tends to just get to the point and make our point as emphatically as possible. But Mercury in Pisces can be a lovely time to engage in anything that is a little bit creative, artistic, and heartfelt.

The Moon Report for the week of March 7

And now, to introduce the Moon report for the week of March 7th, here is a very stylish rendition of our old Moon watch theme, by listener and donor Maria Alexander and her dear husband, Bret. Maria is a long-time friend of mine and she is a Bram Stoker award winning author. Brett is a professional actor and obviously a singer. Let’s hear these two crazy kids do their thing.

Maria & Bret rendition of Moonwatch theme:

April: Oh, that is so lovely! Maria and Bret, thank you so much. And thank you for listening to the podcast.

Gemini First Quarter Moon

This week, we begin with a Gemini First Quarter Moon on March 10th at 02:45 AM Pacific Time. This happens with the Moon at 19° and 50 minutes Gemini, the Sun at 19° and 50 minutes of Pisces. The Sabian symbol for 20 Gemini is “A Cafeteria”, and the Sabian symbol for 20 Pisces is “A Table Set For An Evening Meal”. So, the tension here at a Gemini First Quarter, Moon is, Gemini is very much a sign that is on the go. I have the Moon in Gemini, and in my twenties, when I lived and worked in Los Angeles, I spent a ton of time on the freeway, I was a classic multi-tasker behind the wheel. I would be drinking my coffee, eating breakfast, putting on my makeup, all of the things that you can do when you are literally sitting still in freeway traffic for long periods of time. But, Gemini really speaks to doing everything on the go, whether it’s in your car or stopping by a cafeteria as we in this Sabian symbol.

On the other hand, the Sun at this First Quarter Moon is in Pisces, and Pisces is a sign that is just happy being where it is. It shares this in common to some degree with Taurus. Pisces wants to really inhabit every moment, get everything possible out of it. And the Sabian symbol for 20 Pisces, “A Table Set For An Evening Meal”. In contrast to that Sabian symbol, “A Cafeteria” for Gemini, really highlights the tension between these two signs. And that we’re all feeling perhaps a little bit at this First Quarter Moon, are we going to do things quickly and as conveniently as possible or are we going to relax, set the table, sitting down, maybe with loved ones or friends and enjoying a long evening meal? They’re two very contrasting styles. Now, they have a lot to share with each other as well. And remember that the First Quarter Moon is a phase in which that inherent tension between the sign of the Sun and sign of the Moon, can be very motivating. The whole idea of a First Quarter Moon phase is to act, and to act to some extent on instinct instead of past experience.

In this First Quarter Moon chart, we have Venus and Mars still pretty close to their conjunction that they made in early Aquarius. Mercury’s newly in Pisces, and as well as the Sun, the Moon is also square Jupiter and Neptune, which are getting ready to come together in April in a conjunction. So, those are the major astrological highlights of this First Quarter period. And, the Moon square the Sun, Jupiter and Neptune, all in Pisces are really accentuating this tension between, “Are we just going to gulp down experiences on the go? Or, are we going to relax and examine them and feel them and really focus on them?”

This First Quarter Moon continues the work that we began at the June 10th, 2021 New Moon, at 19° and 47 minutes of Gemini, that particular New Moon was a solar eclipse, and those are always times of sudden change, they’re kind of Uranian in nature. So, that may well have been a time when things were revealed to us that we were not aware of that we’re kind of lying underneath the surface. And it’s only now at this First Quarter Moon that we’re ready to take the knowledge that was revealed to us then, and let it lead us in a new direction. Take a look at the house of your chart, where 19° and 47 minutes of Gemini falls. And this will give you some idea of the area of a life in which you are now asked to get moving, and maybe even without all the information, but with good intentions, and again, an open heart.

We’ll begin to see the revelation of what was conceived back at that June 2021 New Moon and acted upon now at this First Quarter, when we get to the Full Moon of December 7th of this year, at 16° and one minute of Gemini, and then we’ll reach the second real action point in this cycle on Septembers 6th 2023 at the last quarter Moon at 14° and three minutes of Gemini.

This Week’s Void-of-Course Moon times

Let’s take a look at the void-of-course, Moon times for the coming week. These again, are moments in the week for pausing, sitting with the energy of the Moon as it is made its last aspect in its sign, and really think thinking about that and sitting with it until it moves forward into its next sign. You’ll be noticing from week to week, as I talk about these void-of-course Moon periods that the Moons last aspect in its sign tends to be to Pluto or Neptune, which are sort of late in their signs right now. I think Pluto is at around 28° actually as of this week, and Neptune is at almost 23° of Pisces. So, until the faster moving planets move ahead and get later in their sign, the Moons last aspect in each sign will usually be to Neptune or Pluto.

The first void-of-course Moon period for this week begins on March 8th when the Taurus Moon makes its final aspect of trine to Pluto at 06:35 AM Pacific Time, until it moves into Gemini also on March 8th at 10:39 AM Pacific Time, so we have about a four-hour void-of-course Moon period. And, as it’s ended on a trine to Pluto, this is a really excellent void-of-course time for reinforcing changes in daily habits, that on March 10th, the Moon in Gemini makes square aspect to Neptune at 08:42 AM Pacific Time and is void-of-course for 15 hours before it enters Cancer on March 10th at 11:24 PM. A last aspect squared to Neptune that lasts for the majority of the day is not going to be the best day for trying to make progress on anything that is of the nature of Mercury or Gemini, because it’s in conflict with Neptune. So, it really goes back to the things we talked about for the Gemini First Quarter Moon and that tension between the quickness of action and thought with Gemini versus Neptune, which really wants to sit and marinate in thoughts and experiences and do a little daydream, maybe right to little poetry, listen to some music. And then, on March 13th, the Moon in Cancer ends on an opposition to Pluto at 08:44 am Pacific Time, and it’s void-of-course for about four hours before it goes into Leo on March 13th at 12:31 AM.

So, that morning is really about the Moon opposed Pluto, which is kind of contentious, maybe at the void-of-course Moon time on March 8th, where the Moon had ended on that nice trine to Pluto, maybe you decided on some change in routine, some change in habits, and now something comes along to really provoke you and say, “Well, you are sure you’re going to do that? Are you sure you’re able to do that? Do you have the determination, the willpower?” There can be quite a bit of self-doubt I think when the Moon connects with Pluto. Don’t let it completely defeat you and demoralize you in whatever you wanted to do earlier in the week. Just know that this is a sort of a testing moment, about a four- hour test, a morning of saying, “Hmm, am I really up to this?” Of course, then the Moon goes into Leo and Leo feels that it’s up to absolutely any challenge.

Sun conjunct Neptune

This week, the Sun makes its annual conjunction with Neptune on March 13th at 04:43 AM Pacific Time at 22° and 52 minutes of these on the Sabian symbol “Spiritist Phenomena”. So, this is a combination that asks, “What are you materializing? What are you manifesting in your life?” The Sun is a symbol of personal will, and Neptune is a very diffuse energy. So, the Sun can shine as brightly as it wants, but it’s really trying to shine through this very thick mist and fog of Neptune. But this can be a very magical combination as well. And as I said in another episode, there are a couple of times a year we go up to the central coast of California and stay at our favorite hotel, although without my favorite comfy chair, I don’t how often I’ll be returning to this hotel. But in any event, one of the things that we love to do when we’re there is just before Sunset, take a bottle of wine and some crackers, and we go sit outside on these Adirondack chairs that look out over the ocean, and we try to see the green flash as the Sun down. Now, I have never seen this phenomenon, but apparently you can see it shortly after Sunset or just before Sunrise, when the Sun is almost entirely below the horizon, but the upper edge of the Sun is visible. And just for a second or two, apparently, you get this flash of green, the upper edge of the Sun looks green. So I have never seen this. I would love to see it. I don’t know, it evokes to me very much this idea of the Sun together with Neptune, especially the Sun setting over the ocean. And as it those, this beautiful burst of green, which is a color I always seem to associate with

This week, as the Sun comes together with Neptune leading up to March 13th when it’s exact, look for those bursts of inspiration and those moments of clarity that I think we’re always looking for with Neptune. We focus with Neptune on the fog, but really Neptune to me is about how we’re seeking illumination, how we’re trying to find the truth. And as the Sun comes together with Neptune, we realize that the truth is something beyond our own small will, which is represented by the Sun, and that in order to find the part of us, that’s eternal, we have to let go of that sense of ourselves as individuals that are apart from everything and everyone else. So, that’s kind of what suggested I think by the Sun coming together with Neptune. It is a fast little transit. It’s just a couple of days, but it is the moment each year when our ego, our will, needs to take a little bit of a vacation and maybe sit and look out over the ocean and look for the green flash.

Mini-Lesson: Ordering your planets by degree

In today’s mini lesson, I want to share something I learned years ago from my late teacher, Diane Ronngren. It’s a system of working with your natal planets based on their degree. And, I’m pretty sure Diane did not invent this, but I have really not had any luck finding any origin for it. So, if anybody out there listening knows more about it, do email me. But this is what you do.

You list every planet in your chart along with the Ascendant, the Midheaven, and the North Node, and you list them in degree order, from zero to 29. And if you have more than one planet at the same degree, then use the minutes to prioritize. And what this list gives you is a sense of how any moving bodies, planets, asteroids, transits, anything, proceeds through your chart.

My planets begin with Jupiter at zero degrees Aquarius, that’s the earliest degree planet in my chart, and ends with the North Node at almost 28° Leo. I do include, as I said, the Node, the Ascendant, and the Midheaven. You can add other things if you like. What this might say in the case of my chart is that every new transit that comes along, whether it’s the Moon each month or Saturn every 29 years, first triggers Jupiter in my chart by some aspect. And it triggers a call to adventure and maybe a little bit of excessive optimism. And then, the transit ends with a reinforcement of my need to create things independently, that North Node in Leo. So, in the show notes I’m going to link to a handout that will help you quickly see how your chart responds to anything moving through a particular sign of the Zodiac. It’s kind of a neat little trick, and you can play with it every single month. Look at the Moon when it hits your earliest degree planet, and then, just look as it makes aspects to each planet in turn, and it will show you how things tend to flow in your chart.

So, it’s a nice little system, but here’s how I normally use it. On a practical level, listing planets in order like this also makes it super easy when I’m preparing for reading and looking for aspects from transits or the secondary progressed chart or whatever to the natal chart. So today, Neptune is at almost 23 Pisces, so if I’m looking at a client’s chart and I have listed all of their planets in degree order, I can just run my finger down the column of planets and I can see immediately if there’s anything in the chart within a few degrees of 23, because that planet or point is going to be getting a hit from Neptune.

This is similar in a way to a system called ‘Planetary Containment’. It’s described in a book called “Planets and Containment” by John Sandbach and Ronn Ballard. I have no idea if it’s still in print.  But in that system, you list your planets, Ascendant and Midheaven in counter-clockwise order. And that’s the way we normally just look at the charts. So, if you have something in the first house – say you have Mars in the first house – and then the next thing you have is Jupiter in the second house… that’s counterclockwise. You can start at any point apparently in the chart, but most people use their Ascendant. And then you read each successive three planet combination as a group.

So, in that situation, you would begin with Mars, which is the most clockwise planet, and that planet would be the foundation of how that group of planets works together in combination. Then the next planet, which in this case would be Jupiter, shows the focus of how the combination of three planets will be expressed. And then, the next one, the most counterclockwise of the three planets, let’s say it’s the Moon in the seventh house, shows how the three will express themselves.

Now, I have never personally used this system, so I cannot speak to how helpful it is, but it seemed a little bit similar to this technique that my teacher taught us, so I thought it at least deserved a mention in this discussion. If you learn more about it and experiment with it, I would love to hear about what you find.

How to support the podcast, and a shoutout to donors!

Well, that is everything I have on my little show sheet, so, I think I’m going to call this one a wrap. Thanks for listening to The Big Sky Astrology Podcast. If you like what you’re hearing, I hope that you will follow or subscribe so you can stay current with new episodes, rate or review the show. And I really hope that you’ll spread the word, maybe tell an astrology loving friend. You can read show notes and full transcripts and leave your comments about each episode at

Thanks so much to everyone who showed support during our September Podathon. Each week I’m thanking some of you by name. And this week I’m giving a Big Sky Astrology Podcast shout out to Aida Curtis, Yvonne Allara, and Heather Liston.

April: Aida, Yvonne and Heather, thank you so much for listening to the podcast and for supporting the show with your donations. If you miss the Podathon and would like to support the show, please go to And if you have a question about astrology that you would like me to answer on an upcoming episode, please leave a short voicemail message, And I’ll link that in the show notes, or drop me an email

That is it for this episode. Join me again bright early next Monday. And until then, keep your feet on the ground and your eyes on the stars.

© 2022 by April Elliott Kent

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