“Astrology for the Bitter”, by Jon Alan Carroll

Aug 20th, 2008 | By | Category: Prose

Aries (March 21-April 19): The manuscript you toiled over for five grueling years is now being returned by a bored receptionist. Give up.

Taurus (April 20-May 20): You’re having these dark thoughts and this tightness in your gut. To save money, you’ve cut down on little luxuries like cable TV and feelings of self-worth.

Gemini (May 21-June 20): In a reflective mood, you count your blessings. There is no need to use a calculator or take your shoes off. You think of all the things literature has given you: a slum apartment, an $800 car, a welfare hospital.

Cancer (June 21-July 22): Your so-called agent gets 3,450 manuscripts a month. Yours is number 2,857. Abandon all hope and apply to beauty school.

Leo (July 23-Aug. 22): It’s said that you don’t choose writing, writing chooses you. Too bad investment banking didn’t choose you.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): There, deep inside the slushpile of your soul, you’ve searched for the truth inside yourself. Too late, you realize that truth is a fool’s errand and the search is for chumps.

Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): You have six quarters and three loads of laundry. You can’t wash all of it. You are, as Milton Friedman would say, Free to Choose.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): After ten years of mastering the musty tradition of the short story, your work is now returned because it contains insufficient cursing, carnage and dirty sex. Wipe the Kool-Aid off your face, fool.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): True/False: Burn it all down and start again.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): You’ve separated your true friends from the false ones, and found your dog still loves you. You get up to get a snack, but when you get there the cupboard is bare.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): You easily avoid temptations like drugs and booze, because the only entertainment you can afford is sobbing and wailing.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20): Don’t even think about it. It’s too much to hope for.


Jon Alan Carroll (1854-1891): Precocious French Symbolist poet. Rebel, alienated genius, affectionately called “Ike” by his adoring public. Assassinated by disappointed job seeker.

Tags: , , ,

Comments are closed.