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Friday, October 12, 2007

Down to a sunless sea

"Kubla Khan," written by Samuel Taylor Coleridge in an opium-induced dream, is one of the great Lyric poems of the English language. One of the articles linked by Wikipedia calls it a "Metaphor for Opulence."

"Lyricism" is ruled by Venus and "Opulence" is ruled by Jupiter, so says Rex Bills. This hooks into Coleridge's chart sweetly as both planets rule major parts of his chart: Venus rules his Sun and Jupiter rules his Ascenant/Chart. In addition Coleridge had a Leo Moon and every Leo Moon I've personally known has actually lived in a "Pleasure Dome". Opium and Dreams are ruled by Neptune, Pisces, and H12. Coleridge's progressed Sun and Mercury had just moved into his 12th House when he wrote the poem in the Fall of 1797 or Spring of 1798.

Samuel Taylor Coleridge

b. Oct. 21, 1772 10:45 am Ottery St. Mary, England

Sun 29 Libra; ASC 13 Sagittarius; Moon 21 Leo; MC 13 Libra; NN 20 Libra

Coleridge was born during a Grand Earth Trine of Outer Planets (like Beethoven and Rembrandt). This is Capricorn Pluto trine Uranus in Taurus trine Neptune in Virgo. Nobody ever really discusses Earth Sign's roles in creativity very much but it is evidently quite remarkable. Either way, Coleridge is a Pluto in Capricorn Baby so he'll be having a Pluto Return. Maybe it's a good time for the rest of us to invest in poppy field real estate.

Neptune, one of the first places one looks for Poets, Artists and Dreams, is in Coleridge's 9th House of exotic, long distance travel and conjunct Saturn and Venus in Virgo (he's having a Return of those two planets as I write this). Venus rules the Arts and Saturn-Neptune in aspect together is known for bestowing ability to give form to spirit. Uranus (instant enlightenment) was transiting over this conjunction at the time that Coleridge wrote "Kubla Kahn." I guess whatever your methods of 9th house travel, whether via Virgin Atlantic or Opium Pipe, you're gonna be flyin on all propellers with an aspect like this.

Coleridge's Mercury was conjunct his Libra NN in his 10th House. Of course, that's perfect for a poet. His Sun in Libra was also in his 10th house. At the point that he wrote "Kubla Khan" his progressed Venus, ruler of Libra was a couple of degrees away from his Libra MC. All this Libra/Venus emphasis is just mind boggling to me but makes perfect sense.

Coleridge's Solar Return Chart for the year that he wrote about Xanadu is also very interesting. In the Natal Chart, the Nodes were transiting over his natal ASC-DESC axis squared by t. Uranus and the natal conjunction of Neptune-Saturn-Venus. They were of extra strength because they were hitting this Angle.

Then, in Coleridge's Solar Return Chart, the Nodes were layered over the other angle, the MC/IC axis. They were involved in a Mystic Rectangle trining/sextiling an opposition of Retrograde Mercury in Libra opposite Retrograde Jupiter.

That's RETROGRADE Mercury opposite RETROGRADE Jupiter. And they say nothing good comes out of a Retrograde Mercury....tsk, tsk.

There's more.... Where's his Moon & Pluto?

Oh well, forget about Moon & Pluto, drink from the River of Lethe and come drift away down the River of Alph... Here's the first stanza of the poem. Enjoy:

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.
So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round:
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

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