People Get Sick


Scorpio, the exceptionally unusually dominant energy of the day, raises uncomfortable feelings in us… the kind that are difficult to discuss, shameful to admit, and yet key to our deepest forms of healing.

Scorpio can make us want to triumph and dominate at others' expense, as we drool down our faces and onto our shirts over something somebody else has that we covet. These feelings are natural. It's only when we act to hinder or harm the perceived competition that we live out the sign's worst energies—manipulation, malice, barbarity.

However, if we can fess up to the real existence of our less-than-pleasant dark-sides and get those feelings out—no matter how ugly we might think they look (and it's true, they might not win any beauty pageants)—we emerge on the other end purged, cleansed, and with no jerky jack-in-the-box repressions ready to pop out when our handle gets cranked.

The following poem is one I wrote in coming to terms with some shadows of my own, and it immediately came to my mind as something I wanted to post here when I first saw the Scorpio supersaturation headed toward us. I hope it speaks to you during this intense time.

People get sick

People get sick
and we want them to get better,
but we also want them dead.
They live, and it's more of the same.
How we hate our wish to kill
what we cease to care for,
unwilling to bend. Cloak our weakness
in another's dazzling end.
Our mourning faces court the upset
due to us for lasting.
The single breath is ours.
We grab it, snuff the competition,
one less call to make or card to send.

Connections make us
want to fall in love,
even as our arms blast up to block its hasty approach.
We see our needy doubles in their mirrored eyes,
cast them out to blind in thistle-patch,
then lick away the scratches on their faces,
mad about ourselves. We flaunt the bait,
performing lonely, finding out too late
the act has worked. The merge occurred,
and we must do the time
or, breaking out,
shoot the wives and husbands,
drive the children into lakes.

War is hell, so we lament it,
grab for peace
like nature wants it for us.
We, the blessed, arrange
our words in suitable ritual order,
spinning tales inscribed on plaques
at bases of statues we hunger to topple.
Who dare speak revolution?
aware we are among those who would lose
their lives (or are we?),
loyalties concealed behind our upheld hands,
warming at the crater's smoking orange edge.

—Barry Perlman