TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Some people pigeonhole Taurus as a staid, gentle sign, but I know you Bulls are capable of volcanic passion. It's true that your vivid appreciation of life's gorgeous mysteries is sometimes muted by your devotion to duty. That's why you should regularly squeeze outbreaks of sheer ardor into your schedule. I dare you to create a moment when it will be appropriate for you to utter: "The air I breathe in a room empty of you is unhealthy. The merest whisper of your name awakes in me a shuddering sixth sense. I am longing for a kiss that makes time stand still." (The preceding testimony is a blend of words from Edgar Allan Poe, Pamela Moore and John Keats.)
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Memorize these lines, written by George Bernard Shaw, and deliver them to the one with whom you'd most like to make beautiful music together. If there is no human you feel moved to address so tenderly, speak them to a pet, muse, angel, or yourself. "You are my inspiration and my folly. You are my light across the sea, my million nameless joys, and my day's wage. You are my divinity, my madness, my selfishness, my transfiguration and purification. You are my rapscallionly fellow vagabond, my tempter and star. I want you."
CANCER (June 21-July 22): It's easier for Cancerians to love than to be loved. We feel more comfortable giving than taking. We're even susceptible to believing that we're powerful when we're nurturing others and weak when we're being nurtured. Yet until we learn to receive love, we can't fulfill our life's mission. I urge you to practice this art with all your fierce and vulnerable heart. And then practice some more.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): You can actually listen a person's soul into existence. Your receptive interest in the inner life of those you care for can awaken their dormant powers. The teacher Richard Moss says, "The greatest gift you can give another is the purity of your attention." You're now at the peak of your potential to cultivate more potent listening skills. Uncoincidentally, you're also ready to ripen your mastery of intimate communion. Take philosopher Paul Tillich's advice with you everywhere you go: "The first duty of love is to listen."
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): After careful meditation on your current astrological omens, I've decided on this assignment: Memorize these lines, borrowed from a poem by Andrew Varnon, and say them to the person whose destiny needs to be woven more closely together with yours. "Be my ruckus, my perfect non-sequitur. Be my circuit-breaker, my lengthening shadows at dusk, my nest of pine needles, my second-story window. Be my if-you-stare-long-enough-you'll-see. Be my subatomic particle. Be my backbeat, my key of C minor, my surly apostle, my scandalous repartee, my maximum payload. Be my simmering, seething, flickering, radiating, shimmering, and undulating."
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): "Any thought that is not filled with love seems unholy," observed French writer Andre Gide. That's a high standard, but I advise you to do your best to meet it in the coming week. No matter what situation comes up, you'll thrive as long as you ask yourself, "How can I bring more love into the mix?" Now recite these words from Leo Tolstoy as if they were your own: "Love is life. All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love. Everything is, everything exists, only because I love."
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): "One should always be in love," said Oscar Wilde. While I agree, I must also note that it's nearly impossible to pull off. To do so, you have to acquire a number of difficult skills, the most crucial of which is an ability to elude the numbing trance of daily routine. Fortunately, you are the best equipped of all the signs to sustain the heroic ingenuity necessary to dwell permanently in the blessed torment of love. And your mastery is primed to ripen dramatically. Keep this thought as your warning beacon: "The most dire disaster in love is the death of the imagination," said George Meredith.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Want to achieve righteous attunement with cosmic forces? Then cast a love spell on yourself. To assist you, I offer Marge Piercy's poem, "The Real Hearth." Read it aloud three times and you'll uncoil a surge of sweet magic from your mysterious depths. "Let's heat up the night to a boil. Let's cook every drop of liquid out of our flesh till we sizzle, not a drop of come left. We are pots on too high a flame. Our insides char and flake dark like sinister snow idling down. We breathe out smoke. We die out and sleep covers us in ashes. We lie without dreaming, empty as clean grates. Yet we wake rebuilt, clattering and hungry as waterfalls leaping off, rushing into the day, roaring our bright intentions. It is the old riddle in the Yiddish song, what can burn and not burn up, a passion that gives birth to itself every day."
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Ask an imaginative soul friend to work together with you in dreaming up fresh new pleasures. Brainstorm wildly about how you can feel good in ways you've never imagined before. Do research on the reports that other pioneers of delight have left behind. Open your minds as wide as your hearts as you experiment with the holy art of play.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): This week you should memorize the following lines, which were lifted from Bridge's and Bella's Web site at www.members.tripod.com/~perfectcouple/, and speak them dramatically to a cute rascal — preferably one whose destiny needs to be woven more closely together with yours. "I love you more than Madonna loves column inches. I love you more than Bill Gates loves loopholes in anti-trust law. I love you more than Jerry Springer loves trailer-park residents with bizarre stories and pugilistic attitudes. I love you more than Bob Hope loves not being dead. I love you more than Barbara Hershey loves collagen. I love you more than Alan Greenspan loves how the economy fluctuates whenever he scratches his butt."
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): The first part of this week's meditation comes from Irish poet William Butler Yeats: "Love is the crooked thing,/ There is nobody wise enough/ To find out all that is in it,/ For he would be thinking of love/ Till the stars had run away/ And the shadows eaten the moon." Now here's the second half of your meditation, courtesy of me: Though love is the crooked thing and no one's wise to find out all that's in it, you're temporarily wise enough to figure out maybe 70 percent of it. And that's why you have cosmic permission and poetic license to meditate on the arts of love as if you had all the time in the world to do nothing but that. Send me love letters and crafty poems. Write PO Box 150628, San Rafael, CA 94915 or