TAURUS (April 20-May 20): To prepare for my pilgrimage to the Burning Man gathering in the Nevada desert, I interviewed several veterans of the annual event. "What brought you the most exquisite suffering?" was my favorite question. Lilly replied that it was the sheer intensity of the transformation that Burning Man detonated in her. "It didn't provoke a nervous breakdown, exactly," she said. "More like a nervous breakthrough." Then there was Jeff, my world-traveling friend. "The overwhelming generosity and kindness of the people at Burning Man were almost too much to bear," he marveled. "It was a relentless gift, among the most humbling and enriching experiences I've had." Lilly and Jeff came close to describing the quality of your life in the coming weeks.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): It'll be a pretty favorable week to climb mountains in your imagination, to pretend your wounds are beautiful tattoos and to talk faster than a salesman but with more soul. It'll be a downright fabulous time to scare yourself with how beautiful you are, to ridicule the seriousness with which you usually judge yourself and to send the one you secretly admire an anonymous note that says, "I'm on fire dreaming of you." It won't be such a good week to ride a drugged stallion, to stay up all night looking for flying saucers or lost loves or to pine for people who are sitting right next to you.
CANCER (June 21-July 22): Be more like a cat and less like a dog; more like a luxury liner and less like a freight train; more like a dance and less like an editorial; more like your alter ego and less like your ego. Can you handle a few more assignments? Be more like a magic wand and less like a Grail cup; more like an early spring and less like a timeless autumn; more like a gypsy and less like a vice president; more like the person your parents didn't want you to become and less like the things you love to worry about.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): I predict that a bright and bubbly reward will come your way as an indirect result of one of your good deeds. This sweet twist of fate will fuel your growing sense of emotional integration, which will in turn boost your power to translate your highest ideals into practical actions. "That's it?!" you may be saying. "None of Brezsny's usual tricks and double meanings?" Nope, Leo, just plain old good news. You've earned a week free of cosmic jokes.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): What's the first scene that pops into your imagination when I say the word "initiation"? Do you see a would-be fraternity boy being hazed in a shopping mall, wearing nothing but diapers while reciting "Mary Had a Little Lamb"? Or do you picture a blindfolded neophyte garbed in a long white robe, head swimming with pungent incense and hair-raising chants, being spun around in circles by a coven's high priestess? I predict that your own initiation this week will be somewhere between those two extremes, Virgo. Among the terms that will describe it (please choose at least three) are: magical, ridiculous, humbling, spooky, fun, transformative, electrifying. The transition it marks will be both subtle and dramatic.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): At the end of this horoscope I'm going to quote a Zulu proverb that gives rather challenging advice. It may make no sense to you yet. That's because your life lately has resembled a picnic in the suburbs of paradise. The gods have been conspiring to shower you with blessings; the steady flow of synchronicity is proof. But soon the cosmic tide will turn. Not for the worse, really, but definitely in a way that will require more strenuous balancing efforts as you surf the waves of fate. Now I present the Zulu proverb, hoping it will provide you with a head start. "You have to go fetch the future. It's not coming toward you, it's running away."
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Last night I dreamed of all the most interesting Scorpio people I've ever known. They were gathered in a meadow to watch the sword dances of Michelle Yeoh, the actress who played the older female martial artist in the film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. The event gradually turned into a kind of pagan revival meeting. Scorpio after Scorpio testified about the fierce blessings they'd been harvesting. My friend Jessica rejoiced that she no longer scared herself. Elliot described how he'd defeated his habit of projecting his hard-to-admit flaws onto innocent bystanders. Ruby said she'd discovered a psychological trick that immunized her against fears that have no basis in reality. After consulting your current astrological omens, I now offer my interpretation: My dream was a prophecy about your imminent future.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): In appreciation of your thoughtful efforts at keeping your past from becoming your future, I am hereby awarding you with a temporary time-travel permit, good for one round-trip in any direction. It's none of my business what you decide to do with it, though I must be honest and tell you I'd frown on a sentimental visit to your first kiss or your last breath. Instead, please consider using your permit to journey two months into the future, where you can gather intelligence for this fall's showdown between Mother Nature and Father Time.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): I'm not opposed to you playing with fire, metaphorically speaking, as long as you've studied fire safety and have a fire extinguisher, metaphorically speaking. I'm secretly pleased that normally cautious Capricorns are considering such crackling good fun. But I would feel even better about sanctioning your creative pyromania if you'd read up on the legend of the phoenix, the bird miraculously reborn from the ashes of a conflagration that consumed its original body. Keep it mythic, baby.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): You're hopelessly addicted to food, water, air, sleep, money, clothing, shelter and love. Lately, your cravings for all of these precious things have grown to almost superhuman levels; so have your hungers for a host of bonus pleasures. You seem to be spiraling into ever-greater neediness. Luckily for you, though, this couldn't have come at a more auspicious moment, because — surprise! — it's time for the annual Celebrate Your Neediness festival. During this holiday, it's actually good for you to revel and rejoice and even wallow in your neediest neediness.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): The smog is dissipating from your field of dreams. The oil slicks are mysteriously disappearing from your stream of consciousness. And I bet if we analyzed your tears, they'd be free of all pesticides, acid rain and self-pity. In fact, the only lingering snag left over from your struggles against psychic pollution is a mechanical problem. It seems your allegorical F-stop on your metaphysical G-spot is jammed. But very soon you'll find the whimsical X-factor that'll get it unstuck. Tell a story about the time a spirit reached down and altered your course in one tricky, manic swoop. Write:
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