A Venus-Retrograde Mercury Retrograde


I'm not an astrologer who typically makes a big deal out of Mercury retrograde.

Mercury's retrogrades happen three times a year for three-to-four weeks at a time, so they're not terribly uncommon. And they're likelier to bring temporary annoyances than life-redefining challenges (though, to be fair, sometimes one can lead to the other).

The Mercury retrograde which begins this Sunday (Apr 9) is an interesting case to me, though, because it coincides with the final stretch of Venus's ongoing retrograde, now in Pisces… and continues beyond both Venus's stationing back to direct motion and its return to Aries. In other words, the effects of this few-weeks' Merc-rx period will be directly relevant to how the culminating wrap-up of these past couple Venus-highlighted months functionally go down.

Mercury will go retrograde in the early degrees of Taurus, an earth sign known for consistent loyalty, solid material grounding, and stubborn inflexibility. (Depends who you ask.) This is doubly notable because Mars is also currently in Taurus… which means both Mercury and Mars now 'report' (by dispositorship) to Venus, the ruler of Taurus, for their expression. That suggests our thoughts, communications, and exchanges (Mercury)—as well as any forward actions or assertive moves (Mars)—will be inextricably influenced by a still-retrograde Venus in Pisces during these first days of Merc-rx.

Possible effects of this Merc-rx-in-Taurus, Venus-rx-in-Pisces configuration: The classic Merc-rx communicative or transactional missteps could emerge from us mindlessly offering rote sentiments, which awkwardly prove to be remnants from old relational patterns rather than up-to-date representations of our still-in-flux or now-revised attitudes. We may inadvertently sabotage ourselves (or at least flirt with doing so) by repeating worn-out scripts, agreeing out of habit, or staying the course with someone out of consideration for them rather than our own best self-interest. We might suffer from being too fearful of or resistant to change, whether we lack the imagination to envision other potential scenarios or simply refuse to let go out of emotional steadfastness.

Within a week of Mercury's turning retrograde, Venus will turn direct again (on Apr 15). Any 'goofs' around this time may well reveal some additional insight or under-the-surface feeling that spontaneously clarifies what our Venus-rx process has been about.

But then

Expect a major shift in how this Mercury retrograde plays out, beginning on Apr 20-21. During those two days, Mercury will retrograde back into Aries and Mars will move into Gemini. (Side note: Pluto also stations at the same time, amplifying the psychological impact of these events.) While simultaneous Mercury and Mars sign-changes are plenty sufficient for effecting a noticeable shift, this instance carries additional significance: Mercury and Mars will each be concurrently arriving in signs which the other rules, placing them in mutual reception with one another—thus removing them both from any 'reporting' to Venus, while creating a symbiotic relationship that fuels extra-dynamism in their joint expressions.

Mercury in Aries is a fast (if not somewhat impulsive) thinker, an instinct-driven (rather than practically reasonable) decision-maker, and an ultra-direct (though sometimes careless) communicator. Meanwhile, Mars in Gemini makes advances on multiple fronts, hedging its bets by leaving options open, trying a bit of this and a touch of that without commitments to seeing any of it all the way through. Neither is slow, steady, pragmatic, risk-averse, or sentimental. Rather, this synergistic Mercury-Mars combo is antsy, curious, brave, and not especially attached to past patterns or longer-term outcomes. It wants movement, novelty, and stimulation in this very moment.

Let's consider, then, how different these Merc-rx-in-Aries, Mars-in-Gemini effects could be: Suddenly reenergized and no longer 'weighed down' (or is it 'anchored'?) by Taurus's influence over these two now-free-agent planets, we may overcorrect by making snap decisions or going off on out-of-the-blue tangents that pull us away from items we probably should be focused on. In the heat of a moment, we might blurt short-sighted utterances intended to defend and/or distance ourselves. We could lose our patience with hearing others out, instead breezily turning our attentions elsewhere… to something more immediately interesting to us, and not necessarily about them at all.

Having Venus direct again while against this backdrop seems to indicate a likelihood that our initial follow-up steps to any reexaminations, reorderings, and/or reaffirmations spurred by Venus's retrograde could be quite quick, sharp, and invigorating—as well as potentially insensitive to others' feelings, should we need to separate ourselves from them in order to proceed in the most self-supportive manner. This latter potential becomes more pronounced once Venus returns to Aries on Apr 28, the same day retrograde Mercury conjoins disruptive Uranus. Such 'insensitivity' may actually prove essential to our advancement, though it needn't be bolstered by overt unkindness or malice.

By that point, the 'moving on' energy will be palpable… whether that includes us leaving behind an involvement riddled with problems, getting past the problematic chapter itself so we can recommit to something inarguably valuable to us, or some mixture of these sentiments, based on drawing in new energy that'll reignite our own engagement, passion, and/or appreciation.

Mercury goes direct on May 3. Mercury conjoins Uranus again on May 9. Mercury returns to Taurus on May 15. Mars remains in Gemini through Jun 4.