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Jul 29th
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Poetry Corner

AE_authorEditor’s note: In this week’s Poetry Corner, we feature the work of Catie Rosemurgy, the author of two poetry collections, “The Stranger Manual” (Graywolf 2010) and “My Favorite Apocalypse” (Graywolf 2001). She teaches at The College of New Jersey and lives in Philadelphia.


MISS PEACH IS A CROSS BETWEEN
A missing tooth and a fang.
A bloom and a sand storm.
A chain letter and a trap door. A can opener and a kiss.
A moracca and a spear.

Lowered eyes and a suddenly somewhat disconcerting blow job.
A baroque flute flourish and an eerie silence just beyond the cabin wall.

A tube top and a biohazard mask.
Goldilocks and the tongue of a bear.

A little blackout on what you think was Tuesday
and a little black spot on your latest chest x-ray.

AE_StrangerManualA little black period
that holds down words like a tack
and a bright little universe
that loves to turn black.

A ROSE IS A ROSE IS A ROSE IS MISS PEACH

You know that you think the flower is beautiful, but what else do you want to know
about the flower? What else can you know about the flower? What can you do to know
the flower? You can pick it, sketch it, wear it, put it in a vase. Hang it upside down to
dry it. Press it in a book, or read up on it in a book. You can write a book. You can get
access to a microscope. You can give it away. You can stand beside it and cry for
the brain’s tendency to create beauty and then perceive it as unknowable.
It isn’t like smashing your thumb, is it? So you pick the flower. It could be a daisy, but it might be
a rose, the kind of rose that has lived its entire life sipping the mist from the air, the
kind of rose that has a throat, a throat that is always moving, the kind that has petals
you can watch getting further and further apart and you can see growing more and
more petals in its center, the kind of rose you can watch until your head becomes
heavy, saturated, and exponential and starts to loll. It could be that kind of rose, and if
it is, do whatever you have to, but make it stop.

 

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Three major celestial events occur this week. Wednesday, the Sun enters Leo, highlighting the heart center of everyone. Leo is a sign of deep sensitivity (along with Cancer). Wednesday is also the feast day of St. Mary Magdalene, one of the most misunderstood women in the Bible. Saturday, July 25, Venus turns stationary retrograde at 0 Virgo (progressed Regulus, the Law, Hall of Records). Venus retrogrades for 44 days and nights, forming one petal of a five-pointed rosy star (pentagram) in the sky (five retrogrades over eight years = star). Venus retrograde turns values upside down. Our usual sense of beauty, values, the real price of things, relationships—all turn into a bundle of confusion. We don’t seem to know anything. Luxury goods are mispriced, values are jumbled, we wonder who that person is we’re in relationship with. We don’t know where our money is or where it’s gone. Venus, in daily life, represents values (resources, money, possessions and quality of relationships). Venus retrograde asks, “What do I value?” Venus retrograde puts us in touch with what has changed and what is truly of value in our lives. Venus retrogrades from 0 Virgo to 14 degrees Leo (July 25-Sept. 6). Leo is about the self and our creativity, which is how we come to know and value ourselves. We “know ourselves through what we create.” In Venus (values) retrograde (inner focus) we will ask, “What are values (not just money and finances)? What are my values? What do I create? How do I value my creations? Do I value myself?” Sunday, Uranus—planet of all things new, revelatory and revolutionary—also retrogrades (from 20 to 16 degrees Aries) until the full moon of Christmas Day. Five months of Uranus retrograde. In July and continuing on through the following months we have many planets retrograding. Things therefore slow down. Everyone’s focus becomes subjective, hidden by veils and curtains. A time when inner reserves of strength are available. A time of protection.

 

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