ARIES (March 21-April 19): I don't think I'm being unduly optimistic when I speculate that you're on the verge of achieving a ringing victory over your bad self. What makes me so confident that this development is in the works? Well, in recent weeks you have been dealing more forthrightly and intelligently with the lowest aspects of your character. You have also become more fully aware of the difference between your out-and-out unregenerate qualities and the unripe aspects of your character that may someday become very beautiful. There's a second sign that you're close to transforming one of the most negative things about you: You have almost figured out the truth about a murky curse that you internalized some time ago. When you finally identify it, you will know intuitively how to banish it forever.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): I expect that you'll be a force of nature in the coming days, the human equivalent of a divine intervention. In fact, you might want to give fair warning to friends and loved ones who assume that you have always been and will always be steady, placid and mild. Otherwise they may be unduly freaked out when your intelligence explodes like a double rainbow or when you start emoting like a waterfall. They might accuse you of "not being yourself" when your laughter turns volcanic or your decisions hit with the force of the aurora borealis. It'll be interesting for you to notice which of your close cohorts responds most favorably to this outbreak of your elemental gifts.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): "Here's what I did not do this summer," begins the testimony of one of my Gemini readers, Beth Hylton. "Not once did I swing on a tire swing over the river, watching the pink shimmery reflection of myself in a wet suit on a tire swing. I did not take a day off work to sneak out alone to Jones Beach with a book and a beer in a ginger ale bottle. I did not eat outside at a red-
CANCER (June 21-July 22): Murmurs and whispers will have more clout than clamors and shouts. A candle in the dark will provide more illumination than a bonfire at high noon. Short jaunts could transform everything permanently; long trips might only shift things slightly and temporarily. Forceful confrontations may lead to a muddle; feints and tricks and bluffs could spark crafty solutions. The "simple facts" will probably be tainted by lies of omission; the messy contradictions are likely to be eminently trustworthy.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): KFC is test-marketing a flamboyant new menu item at selected restaurants in the U.S. This remarkable delicacy is an exotic sandwich that consists of bacon, two servings of cheese and special sauce, all held together not by bread but by two slabs of fried chicken. I nominate this spectacular creation to be your earthy metaphor of the week. In accordance with the astrological omens, I hope it inspires you to head out to the frontiers of extravagance in both your spiritual affairs and your romantic life. The coming days will be an ideal time to pray to both Christ and the Goddess while making love, for example, or to get sandwiched between two delicious devotees while meditating naked, or to perform a boisterous ritual to invoke emotional riches with the help of a genius of love.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): It's Build Up Your Confidence by Any Means Possible Week—for Virgos only. During this holiday, you have an astrological mandate as well as a poetic license to pluck the easy victories. So go ahead and solve the kinds of riddles that are your specialty. Arrange to be in situations where your perspective is desperately needed. Put yourself in the presence of people who think you're a gift to the human race, and subtly encourage your secret admirers to be less secretive. If you have any trophies or awards, make them more visible. There's no shame in bragging this week, Virgo, but for best results do it with your best understated elegance.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): My first demand is that you weed out the wishy-washy wishes and lukewarm longings that keep you distracted from your burning desires. My second demand is that you refuse to think that anyone else knows better than you what dreams will keep your life energy humming with maximum efficiency and beauty. Now please repeat the following assertions about 20 times: "I know exactly what I want. I know exactly what I don't want. I know exactly what I kind of want but, I won't waste my time on it any more because it sidetracks me from working on what I really, really want."
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Ants may literally be crawling in your pants as you pull off a savvy coup or a brilliant stroke. An annoying pest may try to distract you at about the same time that movers and shakers are tuning in to your magnificence. But I don't mean to imply that minor irritants will undermine your victories. I think you're too unbeatable for that to happen. At worst, you'll have a mild headache as you receive your reward or stumble slightly as you stride into the spotlight.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): "That which can be destroyed by the truth should be," wrote author P. C. Hodgell. I wish there were a gentler way to articulate that wisdom, but I can't think of one. Instead I'll suggest a way to apply it so as to make the end result more graceful than shocking: Don't pour out the whole truth all at once in one big dramatic gesture. Do it gradually and tenderly. As you do, keep in mind that when the truth has finally dismantled the thing that could not endure the truth, you may be able to use the debris as raw material to build something new that the truth will feel right at home in.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): What if a billion Chinese people jumped up into the air at the same exact moment? Would they create, at the moment they landed, a shockwave that would cause an earthquake on the opposite side of the world, in Chile and Argentina? No one knows. I'd like to propose a not unsimilar but more interesting experiment. What if every Capricorn who reads this horoscope reserves one minute at exactly 1 p.m. EDT on Sept. 12, and during that time you all meditate intently on a single glowing thought, which is this: All of you Capricorns deserve an act of uncanny grace that will help free you from one of your most oppressive beliefs.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Some rare people, through heroic acts of will and the help of a really good imagination, manage to free themselves pretty thoroughly from the inertia of their past. This accomplishment is more possible for you right now than it has been in a long time. In fact, you could even overcome a negative legacy that made some of your ancestors crazy and sick. For maybe just the third time ever, you're in a position to escape the sins of the fathers and the flaws of the mothers!
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): If you build it, they will probably come. If you just pretend to build it, they may come anyway, and end up sticking around because of your charming attunement to life's deeper rhythms. If, as you build it or pretend to build it, you act manic or send out mixed messages, they may be intrigued and attracted, but they definitely won't come. So my advice, Pisces, is to suppress your mood swings as you at least start pretending to build the thing in earnest.