Find Rob Brezsny's "Free Will Astrology" online, every Wednesday, one day before it hits the Indy's printed pages.
ARIES (March 21-April 19): In the alternate universe created by Marvel comic books, there is a mutant superhero called Squirrel Girl. She has the magic power to summon hordes of cute, furry squirrels. Under her guidance, they swarm all over the bad guy she's battling and disable him with their thousands of tiny chomps and thrashing tails. She and her rodent allies have defeated such arch-villains as Dr. Doom, Deadpool, Baron Mordo, and Ego the Living Planet. Let's make her your role model for the coming weeks, Aries. The cumulative force of many small things will be the key to your victories. As in Squirrel Girl's case, your adversaries' overconfidence may also be a factor.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): You have arrived at the edge of reality. Or rather, to be precise, you have arrived at the edge of what you think of as reality. Here's where things could get very interesting. Just on the other side of that edge you're brushing up against, there is much, much more reality—a vast territory you have barely imagined, let alone believed in or explored. Are you feeling brave? If you're willing to find out about stuff you didn't even realize you would love to experience, I suggest you slip across the border and wander around on the other side.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): A character in Neil Gaiman's graphic novel A Game of You delivers this speech: "Everybody has a secret world inside of them . . . No matter how dull and boring they are on the outside, inside them they've all got unimaginable, magnificent, wonderful, stupid worlds. Not just one world. Hundreds of them." As a Gemini, you are not, of course, dull and boring on the outside. That may have something to do with why your secret inner worlds are often even frothier and sparklier than most people's. But lately, I'm afraid, some of those secret inner worlds of yours have gotten a bit shabby and dank. It's time for a deep cleansing. To be thorough, don't just wash your own brain. Wash your wild heart and funky soul, too.
CANCER (June 21-July 22): "You begin saving the world by saving one person at a time," said writer Charles Bukowski. "All else is grandiose romanticism or politics." I invite you to make that thought one of your guiding principles in the coming week, Cancerian. Translate your high ideals into actions that make a practical impact on particular human beings and animals. Instead of merely talking about what good things you want to do, actually do them. As much as possible, be sure that every detail of your daily life reflects your vision of ultimate truth and beauty.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): If you were a fledgling savior, now would be a propitious moment to begin your messianic mission. If you were a musician hoping to leap to the next level of career success, this would be prime time to plan an extensive tour. If you were the inventor of the Next Big Thing, I'd suggest that you get your marketing campaign in gear. And if none of those descriptions fits your personal situation, regard them as apt metaphors for your use. How can you spread the word about what's most important to you?
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): As frontman of the band Queen, Virgo singer Freddie Mercury made use of his four-octave range with flamboyant showmanship and breathtaking technique. Many critics regard him as one of the greatest vocalists in the history of pop music. Freddie joked that he was perfect except for one glaring flaw: his overbite. Because he had four extra teeth in his upper mouth, his top jaw protruded. But he chose not to alter his appearance with surgery because he suspected it might change his singing voice in unpredictable ways. Is there a comparable situation in your own life, Virgo? A so-called imperfection that seems to be entwined with a beautiful asset? I urge you to be like Freddie. Accept the paradox—embrace it and celebrate it—and move on.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): The 14th-century poet Dante was a major influence on 20th-century novelist James Joyce. "I love Dante," wrote the author of the epic novel Ulysses. "He is my spiritual food." And yet Joyce felt he had to absorb Dante in small doses. "Dante tires one quickly," he said. "It is as if one were to look at the sun." Is there any influence like that in your own life, Libra? Judging from the astrological omens, I'm guessing it's a fine time for you to get as much sustained exposure to that glorious source as you can bear.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Greek poet Sappho was renowned in antiquity. The nine books she wrote were so esteemed that the historian Strabo wrote, "in this whole span of recorded time we know of no woman to challenge her as a poet even in the slightest degree." And yet little of Sappho's work survives. As of 2004 there were just 264 fragments and three complete poems. But then a fourth complete poem emerged. Its text was written on papyrus that had been wrapped in the casing of an Egyptian mummy. The mummy had been stored for years in a back room at Cologne University in Germany before someone discovered its hidden treasure. Your assignment, Scorpio, is to seek an equivalent recovery. Search for a part of the past that's still beautiful and useful, even if that quest leads you to unlikely and obscure places.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): When I turn my psychic attention in your direction, I smell smoldering smoke. Here's how I interpret that: Your internal fire is burning with less than maximum efficiency. Do you agree, Sagittarius? If so, do you know why that might be? Did you not provide enough kindling? Is the wood too green? Is the ground wet? I urge you to find out what the problem is. You can't afford to have sputtering flames and sooty light and spotty warmth. You need a steady blaze that radiates brilliant light and strong heat.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Very few of us are completely uninhibited about expressing who we really are. Most everyone is shy about revealing at least one facet of his or her identity. Why? Maybe because we're afraid that people will judge us harshly for being different from what they think we should be. Or maybe our secret side is at odds with our self-image, and we hesitate to acknowledge it even to ourselves. What is this part of you, Capricorn? In what sense are you still in the closet about a truth or quality or event that's central to your character? I urge you to have a conversation with yourself about it. You aren't necessarily ready to tell the whole world about it, but now might be the right time to start considering the possibility that you can give it more room to play.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): I absolutely forbid you to be a slave of happiness, a victim of pleasure, or a prisoner of love. Wait. Sorry. I take that back. What gives me the right to forbid you from doing anything? It's your life. You're the boss. So let me reframe my previous advice. Dear Aquarius, I beg you not to be a slave of happiness, a victim of pleasure, or a prisoner of love. None of the good things in life will give you what you need if you make yourself crazy or sick while pursuing them. That's the cautionary news. The encouraging news is that in the next five weeks, I think you will have a knack for cultivating a graceful relationship with happiness, pleasure, and love.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Don't be like the ducks that are floating on Phoenix Lake a short distance from where I'm sitting. They're feeding entirely on the surface, happy to skim a few insects from the top of the placid waters they're drifting on. No, Pisces, be more like the frogs that are diving to probe for morsels down below. This is a phase of your astrological cycle when the quest for more variety can deepen your perspective and provide better nourishment.