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Mercury, now stationary, goes into apparent retrograde motion at 4:48 AM PDT 10 May at 4 Gemini 51. This point gives us a kind of ‘birth snapshot’ of the retro period–and in this case, offers commentary on the atmosphere that will surround the second eclipse of the set, due late PM Pacific time of the 15th.

Turnaround occurs just after Merc was squared by the Virgo Moon and just as Merc begins to pull away from a semi-sextile to Pallas, and at the point the Moon sextiles Hygeia and the two act as base to a loose Finger of God, apex Venus=emotional conflict (or an intuitive critical take on that conflict) moves away from a Warrior stance, the kind we might’ve taken automatically in supposed defense of our rights, and toward something healthier, something that rewards via better relationships or some other sort of pay off.

Happening in Gemini, this retro period asks us to re-think, and it does so after giving us a feeling-based critique or conversation, or offering a fresh accounting or new contacts–and that means best results come if we’re willing to cast a thoughtful, critical eye on proceedings of the House(s) where Gemini sits in the natal chart–and should perhaps consider using this period for making plans or laying out the narrative we want to follow post-direction. The first thing Merc does in retro is re-initiate that semi-sextile to Pallas, suggesting that re-consideration of matters brings a wise viewpoint into perspective–what more could we want?

That query is answered by a square to Juno that doesn’t perfect before retrograde. That implies conflict over empowerment and personal authority, especially over oneself, may go unresolved, for a while longer. The Sun and Mercury meet in Inferior Conjunction at 00 Gemini, just after Merc has been sextiled by Jupiter and just before the Sun sextiles Jupiter. This may inspire a kind of ‘last word’ in beliefs that undergoes stark examination under the light of the Sun–with thoughts then two days later plunging into the experience of sensation and instinct–and it feeling as if we must understand something visceral, primal, and necessary to our survival–which is likely to make us both a little irrational and a little testy (Merc conj Sedna at 29 Taurus).

The Sabian for the turnaround point may tell us something, especially in terms of setting our expectations for progress/ change: ‘A Revolutionary Magazine Asking For Action’. There’s an irony in something as staid as a magazine advocating for upheaval of the status quo and thorough change–and another point: if, say, a manifesto for revolution appears in a magazine, how much action would you expect that to prompt in this day and age? We may spend the retro seeing this kind of discrepancy, noting how the words don’t match the medium that delivers them (making it hard to take them seriously, or at least hard to be inspired to extremes by them); those words for revolution may in fact be pre-approved by the powers-that-be, change that only touches surfaces and keeps those who hold power in place. It may be that we must adjust our expectations: though we may long for revolution, the time may not yet be right–we are in the planning stage (Gemini)–we still need to get in touch with our gut (Merc’s retreat into Taurus) before we’ll know what to do, what to think, how to respond.