Why Mercury Retrograde can be your writing, reading (and weeding) friend

Frog figurines

An amphibious trio reunited on the cusp of the most recent Mercury Retrograde. The frogs on the left appear no worse for the wear after 15 years under the rug in our overgrown garden.

The Kenyon Review, the Atlantic, DMT The Spirit Molecule jpeg

So much reading. Yummy. Hard copies are the format of choice when electronic devices are behaving badly.

A planetary alignment that happens three-to-four times yearly for about three weeks at a stretch, Mercury Retrograde is infamous for communication glitches and equipment malfunctions. Even the blissfully unaware or disbelieving might tend to be more accident prone. It’s not considered a good time to sign contracts or make permanent decisions. But you can’t stick your head in the sand like the fabled ostrich. Life is meant to be lived joyfully with unbounded curiosity and creativity every moment of every day. So while this most recent Merc Retro pays a visit it’s useful to consider the positive aspects. What in your life would be welcomed if it circled back around? Is there a project or situation that might benefit from a slowdown? If like me you sometimes have trouble finding stillness, the halting aspects of this time period might be rejuvenating.

Sometimes what comes back around can be lovely. Case in point: This froggy trio of adorable figurines I’ve had since high school, good-luck touchstones given to me by a boyfriend’s mother. The lightest colored, with his “hands” behind his torso, has been perched in or beside many a potted houseplant over the years. The other two I recovered in my garden today, under a carpet remnant put down in 1999 or thereabouts to smother weeds. Earlier this spring I began reclaiming the old plot, gradually working my way to the carpeted section, where our beloved dogs are buried. I’m planting forget-me-nots and other perennial wildflowers over Moon and Tonka’s earthly resting place.

Before the frogs turned up I found three of Tonka’s tennis balls, re-placing them carefully on his improvised headstone. The mementoes inspire me to fearlessly focus without resistance on whatever arises again. If it’s here, it’s returning for a reason. For a resolution. Like my novel edits, which, ahem, came to me today. More Than You Think You Know is being prepped for release by Beating Windward Press later this year.

Going forward in reverse gear is sure to be a fun and wild ride. What about you? Is there a story thread lost that might be found? A work in progress that will benefit from easy-paced, non-deadline attention? This isn’t considered an opportune time to launch new projects. But it’s a fine opportunity to refine that which is already underway.

Bonus inspiration: Heather Roan Robbins presents her Starcodes for the week each Thursday. It’s full of realistic, pragmatic and funny observations about what the planetary configurations mean to us and the people around us. https://starcodes.wordpress.com/

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