Greetings stargazers and newsletter readers,
Harvey here with another monthly dispatch from the good ship Season. It’s getting frosty here in Leeds, but if you listen carefully, you can hear the clippity-clopping of Sagittarius season bringing some fiery heat to warm your cockles. My birth chart is lacking in fire signs, nothing but earth and water (aka a beach dweller), so I come to write this newsletter as an admiring outsider. While I’m flapping around in the shallows, Sagittarius strides proudly, chest out with an arrow pointed right at the sun. This season is one for taking aim at your goal and letting loose a bolt of determination. It’s also the season for being half-horse-half-human and being slick with a bow and arrow.
Chiron and Achilles (c. 1922-1925). John Singer Sargent
This symbol of Sagittarius comes from a particular centaur from Greek mythology, Chiron. Centaurs had a reputation for being the bad boys of mythological hybrid creatures, with a propensity for being lusty and going buckwild. (sidenote: has the time for a centaur focused teen franchise been and gone?) Chiron, however, was not like the other centaurs. He was “the wisest and justest of all the centaurs”, he had book smarts and was nice. Depictions of him were keen to make this distinction by putting him in human clothes (why hide your hot centaur bod under a bushel, imo)
Chiron, Peleus and infant Achilles
Chiron was best known as the teacher of some of the heavy hitters of the Greek pantheon: Ajax, Theseus, Jason, Achilles and plenty more that weren’t covered in the 3 weeks of Greek mythology we studied at school when I was 7. I’ve painted a very “respectable” character, but Chiron, like Sagittarians, understood the importance of letting loose. In one Byzantine tradition, Chiron even taught the god of wine, insanity and ritual madness, Dionysus. According to Ptolemaeus Chennus of Alexandria “Dionysus was loved by Chiron, from whom he learned chants and dances, the bacchic rites and initiations.” When I think of a modern day bacchic rite, I think of Steve Aoki’s vocational commitment to throwing cakes at people.
This season’s mix comes from California-based producer and DJ, Tomu DJ. My first exposure to her was from the excellent mix she did for our friends at Chroma, which led me to her prolific Bandcamp back catalogue. From the energetic drum machine & synth workouts of her earlier EPs to the slower roll of her debut album - and certainly one of the best of 2021 - Feminista, Tomu DJ is a truly versatile artist. This hour-long mix showcases just that, effortlessly weaving spoken word pieces and blissful synths, with a whole host of bangers from across genre and time. I could provide a spoiler-filled list of my favourite moments but instead I’ll leave you with this: this mix is an incredible journey and will leave you in no doubt that Tomu, is well and truly, the DJ.
I’m afraid i don’t have a pithy sign off for this month, honestly I’m just enjoying listening to Tomu’s mix for the 3rd time but I will leave you with this link to an image I found when googling ‘reverse centaur’ (SFW and honestly not as bad as I expected.
Until next time, onwards and upwards
Harvey / Docterre xx