|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Malbone: An Oldport Romance by Thomas Wentworth Higginson:
beaches, beneath the powerful suction of the undertow; and
there were more and more of those muffled throbs along the
shore which tell of coming danger as plainly as minute-guns.
With these came mingled that yet more inexplicable humming
which one hears at intervals in such times, like strains of
music caught and tangled in the currents of stormy
air,--strains which were perhaps the filmy thread on which
tales of sirens and mermaids were first strung, and in which,
at this time, they would fain recognize the voice of Emilia.
OUT OF THE DEPTHS.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Dreams by Olive Schreiner:
the first and last parts; these are placed according to the date of the
I. The Lost Joy.
II. The Hunter (From "The Story of of an African Farm").
III. The Gardens of Pleasure.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln:
for those who here gave their lives that this nation might live.
It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate. . .we cannot consecrate. . .
we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead,
who struggled here have consecrated it, far above our poor power
to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember,
what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.
It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished
work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.
It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining
before us. . .that from these honored dead we take increased devotion
|The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from The Secret Places of the Heart by H. G. Wells:
the first beautiful thing he had ever possessed. He was the
darling of fond and indulgent parents and his nursery was
crowded with hideous rag and sawdust dolls, golliwogs, comic
penguins, comic lions, comic elephants and comic policemen
and every variety of suchlike humorous idiocy and visual
beastliness. This figure, solid, delicate and gracious, was a
thing of a different order.
There was to be much conflict and distress, tears and wrath,
before the affinity of that cleanlimbed, shining figure and
his small soul was recognized. But he carried his point at
last. The Mercury became his inseparable darling, his symbol,