Highlights for May 10-16, 2021: Joyful Retreat

Joyful Retreat

Dates and times are given for U.S. Pacific Time zone.

My aim is true

I‘ve always had terrible aim. I’d try to throw a toy to the cats, for example, and it would just… drop. Couldn’t so much as sink a wad of paper into a trashcan from across the room.

But one day, I remembered a piece of advice from long-ago: Just focus on the point where you want something to land. I tried it with a toy, and it found its target (a delighted Violet) with ease.

This week, Mercury, the planet of perception, comes together with the North Node (May 10, 2021, 12:01 pm PDT), which marks the path of fulfillment and growth. The same technique can help you reach those North Node goals: focus on where you’re going, and your aim will be true.


The Taurus New Moon (May 11, 2021, 11:59 am, 21.17 Taurus) is on the Sabian symbol 22 Taurus, A white dove over troubled waters. Befitting the dove symbolism, this New Moon point is also in aspect to peace-loving Neptune. It’s in smooth aspect to Pluto, too, which suggests that troubles can be overcome with practical, sensible, Taurus methods.

New Moons are times for planting, both literally and metaphorically. Taurus New Moons, in particular, are well-suited to prosperity rituals (Taurus is ruled by Venus, the money planet). But this particular New Moon urges that we set our sights beyond personal riches, toward a more truthful and empathetic heart.

We don’t usually see results from our New Moon rituals right away, but we should see a few tender shoots at the May 26 Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse. By the Nov. 19 Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse, relationships will reflect what was planted now. And as the Lunar Phase Family initiated at this New Moon unfolds over the next year and a half, the action points are Feb. 8, 2022 (First Quarter Moon, 19.46 Taurus), Nov. 8, 2022 (Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse, 16.00 Taurus), and Aug. 8, 2023 (Last Quarter Moon, 15.38 Taurus). New Moons are powerful in the moment, but more so as their stories spread out over time, projecting our dearest hopes in both the short and longer term.

Proceed with caution

Things are gradually looking a lot more normal these days. At this week’s Mars/Uranus sextile (May 11, 2021, 7:47 pm PDT), many of us are socializing more than at any time since the pandemic began. These gatherings are a kind of release valve, allowing us to let off steam without (hopefully) exploding.

But steam can scald us, so take care. Traffic is back to normal (awful) here, and drivers seem particularly erratic and impatient. And as we mingle in person, the points of disagreement that made the U.S. such a tense place back in January (at Mars and Uranus’s volatile conjunction) will show up, too. I’m hearing more police helicopters, sirens, and reports of violence than I have for a very long time.

Mars can be aggressive and Uranus can be erratic and unpredictable. So as we enjoy late spring breezes and reunions with friends, let’s proceed with caution.


Whenever a planet connects with Saturn – an exacting, pitiless planet, impatient with mediocrity – it develops a flinty edge and an over-the-top work ethic. But hard work can yield brilliant results, so while Mercury trines Saturn (exact on May 12, 11:33 am PDT), direct your focus toward good, useful work. Just be mindful of the language you use to yourself and with others – let it be fair and kind, even if you have to tell some tough truths.


Sometimes, a good, solid nap is just what you need to refuel your mind, spirit, and creative juices. A lunch break overlooking the ocean or a lake, or in the company of a good book, can do the same. Do it for the right amount of time – not too much! – and you’ll be refreshed and productive for the remainder of the day.

When the Sun in Pisces conjoined Neptune back on March 10, it was nap time; as it passed through Aries (March 20-April 19), we woke up, started gathering supplies and making outlines. And now, as the Sun sextiles Neptune (May 12, 10:45 pm PDT) in Taurus, new tools, ideas, and information are added to the mix. What story are you getting ready to tell? Look to Neptune’s placement in the Pisces house of your chart (don’t know how to find it? this blog post/video might help) to locate it, and the Taurus part of your chart to see how you’ll tell it. And remember to take some time out for dreaming.

Joyful retreat

Jupiter enters Pisces this week (May 13, 2021, 3:36 pm PDT). This is pretty big news, because Jupiter takes about 12 years to get around the zodiac and hasn’t been in Pisces since Jan. 2010-Jan. 2011. Jupiter announces his entrance into a new sign – and a new area of your birthchart – by bellowing, “More!” More, better, bigger – these are some of Jupiter’s favorite words. In Pisces, one of the signs of its rulership, what does Jupiter want more of? Well, more meaning, for one thing. Look to the Pisces house of your birthchart to find your sanctuary, the areas in which you seek union with the divine – and with Jupiter here, you’ll throw yourself into them with joyful abandon.

Jupiter in Pisces can also trigger our escapist tendencies, and each of us knows what ours are – alcohol, drugs, food, sex, books and movies, sleep, exercise, whatever. One way to manage Jupiter as it zig-zags through Pisces is to take periodic, preemptive breaks from the world. Plan a retreat. Schedule a meditative meeting with Jupiter each Thursday (the day sacred to Jupiter), in the bathtub if necessary. In short, this is a year to reestablish a joyous sense of spiritual purpose. Jupiter will be in Pisces from May 13-July 29, 2021; Dec. 28, 2021-Oct. 27, 2022.

Writing and images © 2021 by April Elliott Kent

Listen to this week’s podcast episode for more discussion of the week’s highlights!

Join me for a free webinar, Working with Eclipses, on May 15 & 22! Details here!

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