|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Copy-Cat & Other Stories by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman:
Lily had overheard Arnold Carruth and Johnny
Trumbull and Lee Westminster and another boy,
Jim Patterson, planning a most delightful affair,
which even in the cases of the boys was fraught with
danger, secrecy, and doubtful rectitude. Not one
of the four boys had had a vacation from the village
that summer, and their young minds had become
charged, as it were, with the seeds of revolution and
rebellion. Jim Patterson, the son of the rector, and
of them all the most venturesome, had planned to
take -- he called it "take"; he meant to pay for it,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Sylvie and Bruno by Lewis Carroll:
I'm afraid you find me a very garrulous old man."
"No indeed!" I exclaimed earnestly. And indeed I felt as if one could
not easily tire of the sweet sadness of that gentle voice.
"It is, that we should learn to take our pleasures quickly, and our
"But why? I should have put it the other way, myself."
"By taking artificial pain--which can be as trivial as you
please--slowly, the result is that, when real pain comes, however
severe, all you need do is to let it go at its ordinary pace, and it's
over in a moment!"
"Very true," I said, "but how about the pleasure?"
Sylvie and Bruno
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Paz by Honore de Balzac:
to play only melodramas, in which I have nothing but little bits
of parts which don't POSE a woman. How could you misunderstand the
nobleness of my feelings for you?--for there are two ways of
expressing gratitude. You who seemed so happy in seeing me well-
off, how can you leave me in poverty? Oh, my sole friend on earth,
before I go back to the country fairs with Bouthor's circus, where
I can at least make a living, forgive me if I wish to know whether
I have lost you forever. If I were to let myself think of you when
I jump through the hoops, I should be sure to break my legs by
losing A TIME. Whatever may be the result, I am yours for life.
|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 Another Study of Woman by Honore de Balzac:
turns them into reality and torment; and such jealousy is as
delightful as it is distressing."
A foreign minister smiled as, by the light of memory, he felt the
truth of this remark.
"Besides," de Marsay went on, "I said to myself, why miss a happy
hour? Was it not better to go, even though feverish? And, then, if she
learns that I am ill, I believe her capable of hurrying here and
compromising herself. I made an effort; I wrote a second letter, and
carried it myself, for my confidential servant was now gone. The river
lay between us. I had to cross Paris; but at last, within a suitable
distance of her house, I caught sight of a messenger; I charged him to