August MMXXI | A.W. Clovenhopf

Like many creatures of the night, the blinding sun of high summer exhausts me. The lion’s share of Leo season is left to the foolhardy, the youthful, and the vain. The heroes’ adventure begins right away, on August 1st, when Mercury initiates a superior conjunction. Mercury, setting controls for the heart of the Sun, incinerates and then phoenixes from the grave. Singed with visions of what could be, we are wrought with a new impetus for self-expression. Struck by the urge to make something of meaning during the course of our sweaty, miserable lives, we head to our respective arts and get working. After all, what is the purpose of human existence if not to reveal our vulnerability, our love? The struggle of the solar impulse lies in those all-too-human needs for both self-expression and social acceptance. Go too far into the light, and you are blinding. A human drought, a black hole. Revert to the opposite side of the zodiac and you welcome the Aquarian impulse—a world where nothing is for you, a disassociated entity forever among the crowd but never belonging. As Mercury catches up to the Sun, our understanding changes from the nocturnal and instinctual response of the lunar phase to the logical and rigorous scientific bona-fides of the solar phase.

This anagnorisis is cemented the following day, as Mercury runs full stop into Saturn, backtracking through Aquarius and opposing the Sun. About that existential goal, the one where we achieve recognition for our unique contribution, Saturn inquires: ‘Have you considered how much work that all includes? Have you considered the finite quality of time, and that you have utility bills, demanding animal companions, people who are concerned about how many meals you’ve eaten from the convenience store?’ With Saturn involved, there’s no way around putting in the effort. Keep this in mind, maintain patience, and ideas considered in early May might begin to cement themselves now.

On August 6th, the Sun squares Uranus in Taurus. The dialogue between fixed fire and fixed air looks more like a shouting match as tempers flare and neither party is interested in budging. Refusing to compromise on your morals is one way to look at it. Defining the moral high ground based on an ever-shifting and narrow conception of your own patchwork philosophy is another. Either way, because the square is asking for a resolution between two signs of a fixed nature, chances are this will take a while to sort out. Astrological knowledge allows us to prepare to suffer however we best see fit: torture yourself about your unlived potentials, or torture yourself because changes occurring elicit fear of the unknown.

The new moon on August 8th carries the tension of these aspects into the upcoming month. The territory to be tread is fraught with demons from our recent past. With the Sun and Moon both in the haughty sign of the Lion, conflict can feel beneath you. Avoid naïve thinking that if someone else could just do what you’d like everything would be great. Addressing the issues may require compromise on the part of all parties. Luckily, inventive solutions may be at hand with creative Leo, inventive Aquarius, and practical Taurus involved.

We’re still feeling a little raw come August 9th as Venus opposes Neptune. Disillusionment and confusion reign, and getting organized feels impossible. Then, on the 18th, Mercury meets up with Mars in astute Virgo. Do we have a criticism to deliver? Mincing words may lead to more confusion; nitpicking annoys everyone, including yourself. Both Virgo and Pisces want to be helpful, so keep the spirit of service in mind and you’ll deliver a meaningful suggestion. The Sun opposes Jupiter on the 19th, leading to benefic promises and overdrawn accounts. Uranus also stations retrograde, doubling down on its convictions. We have the opportunity to retrace our steps in recent financial and environmental decisions. Uranus in Taurus pushes for progressive solutions, which does not often lead to a clear path forward. It’s like being handed a machete rather than being shown the clear and easy path. The full moon on the 22nd is the second full moon in Aquarius this year. Chances taken (or avoided) around July 23rd’s full moon unfold further into our realities. The moon’s movement away from Jupiter suggests we may have finally had the pluck to make a leap into a new circumstance. Saturn’s helpful aspects to both Venus and the north node suggest our faith will be rewarded with patience.


ARIES: Perhaps you’ve found yourself in a situation causing a total dearth of enjoyment of your life? Lucky you, the new moon on the 8th would like to deliver circumstances that spark a reunion between you and the things or people that make you feel like a plucky little ramlet again.

TAURUS: With Uranus in your sign, chaos has been your middle name over the past few years. With its square to Saturn in effect for most of the year, you may be feeling it more than most. The new moon in your sector of home has you tempted to pull out by the roots and deposit yourself where the grass is greener… Get all the facts before you make any big moves.

GEMINI: The new moon emphasizes your communications and voice early next month. The difficulty will be to get past the excess mental chatter and down to focused, clear missives. And a helpful reminder, many impasses come from not being heard well by the audience, so if you’re on the listening side, remember that’s a skill to develop, too, even if you’re bored.

CANCER: The second house has an association with “The Gate of Hades” in traditional astrological practice. Having a new moon in this damp, mildewy sector of your chart suggests a descent is in the works. Whatever treasures lie below patiently await your approach.

LEO: That signature style you’ve been known for has been copied, cannibalized and diluted down to meaninglessness. The new moon in your sign reminds you that change is terrible, and it never happens on your own terms, but is likely necessary. Keep ‘em on their toes, Leo.

VIRGO: The action at the beginning of the month is happening in a secluded section of your chart, but lovebugs Mars and Venus are moving through your sign. Are you imagining something better for yourself while biding your time? Or making moves on an easy target when your heart is somewhere else? Remember to be grateful for whatever you’ve got, you cad.

LIBRA: New creative alliances have the potential to be sources of long-lasting enjoyment. However, Mars and Venus in your secluded house of endings suggest it’s best to keep things under wraps for the moment.

SCORPIO: Occupation-related burnout is on the rise for workers across the globe. Difficulty concentrating, anxiety and detachment are some of the most common indicators. In astrological terms, the stars deliver with a lively, creative new moon in your house of career. Good luck getting your nose away from the grindstone long enough to make something out of it.

SAGITTARIUS: I feel for you, Sag. A new moon happening in exuberant Leo in your house of travel and adventure begs to get this show on the road. If only it were so simple! It’s a nasty world out there, anyways, best to just find an interesting travel documentary and forget about it.

CAPRICORN: The house of death and the occult beckons on August 8th when the night is unlit by the fresh moon. As Arthur C. Clarke astutely quotes, “any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic,” summoning images of quiet Capricorns, hooves clicking away at their electronic drum machines, horns locked in battle with inner demons too foul to name.

AQUARIUS: Feeling lucky or just bloated? There can be a sort of hangover reaction when the greater benefic retrogrades back into your sign. As the new moon happens in your house of partnerships, you may be reminded of the Oscar Wilde quote, “when the gods wish to punish us they answer our prayers.”

PISCES: Exhausted by the daily routine? You’ve probably picked up some pretty crummy habits over the years. The new moon on the 8th would love to help you figure out better ways to get yourself in an organized, productive, tax-law abiding state.


ARIES: With the Sun in your enthusiastic and adventurous house of joy opposed to the moon (and Jupiter) in your house of friends, I have few negative things to say about the end of August. I’m sure you’ll find some way to ruin it but you’re not allowed to blame the astrology.

TAURUS: Considering relocating for a more promising gig? It looks like some annoying conversations await you as you embark to deliberate enticing options available to you. But with Saturn in a helpful angle to your ruler Venus, you’ve got a good chance of making things work out well for yourself.

GEMINI: New opportunities for education and community based contacts emerge at the end of the month. With your ruler tuning in to the weird waves of planet Uranus, your freak flag is flying high. When you behave in an unabashedly personal way, you can help others feel more comfortable expressing themselves, too.

CANCER: With the Sun and moon both invisible from the perspective of your rising sign, you are lost in a new world. Your theme at month’s end is sorting out the issue of what we possess and how that possesses us. If the true treasures are that of the spirit, ensure you aren’t indebting yourself to causes that betray what you really value.

LEO: Is it now or never, Leo? With the Sun and Moon at critical degrees of your sign of self and the partner, you’re feeling under pressure to make a commitment. Sweet Venus angling up to solid Saturn wants long-term stability. Mercury and Uranus working together promise to keep it interesting.

VIRGO: Your agile mind has been on the go with Mars and Mercury working together. With the Sun still lagging behind in your secluded twelfth house making sure your communications are clear and digestible for others is the tough part.

LIBRA: Affable Venus is at home in your sign at the end of the month, and the full moon in your house of joy promises interesting pleasures. As the Sun occupies your house of friends, these treats may be more of the creative or even socially indulgent kind.

SCORPIO: The best thing about having a home is when you can have it all to yourself. Unfortunately, the full moon at month’s end pits that beautiful sweet privacy against a looky-loo who would really like you to be a little more forthcoming in the name of your career or reputation.

SAGITTARIUS: The series of eclipses along your sign may have caused your value system to change over the past year. Even though you may feel more broad-minded in your thinking, this can cause an upset with your circumstances where everyone is more familiar with the former you.

CAPRICORN: With the full moon in Aquarius, your values are on display. It’s not unusual for you to deliver well-meaning messages in the guise of condescension. Those who are close to you know you mean to coax the best out of us lazy assholes, but your fierceness may cause fractures between a desire to be socially acceptable and a need to be true to yourself.

AQUARIUS: Not one, but two full moons in your sign this year! For someone who may prefer inhabiting a cliffside cave this might be a lot of attention. This full moon again puts the emphasis on your relationships, but this time it looks like a promising sequel to whatever you struggled to initiate at the end of July. As a Saturnine type, you are likely familiar with slow starts, but recognize when it’s worth it to wait around for the long haul.

PISCES: With so many planets retrograde and the full moon in your house of closure, perhaps you feel like you’ve replayed a situation enough times in your mind that you aren’t even sure what really happened or how you feel. We don’t always have the luxury of closure. The imaginal realm holds more for you now than the world outside. You are provided a planetary opportunity to retrace your steps. Make sure you get it right this time.