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Today's Stichomancy for Michael Jordan

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay:

While he was standing there, anxious and hesitating, he heard the drum taps. The rhythmical beats proceeded from some distance off. The unseen drummer seemed to be marching through the forest, away from him.

"Surtur!" he said, under his breath. The next moment he marvelled at himself for uttering the name. That mysterious being had not been in his thoughts, nor was there any ostensible connection between him and the drumming.

He began to reflect - but in the meantime the sounds were travelling away. Automatically he started walking in the same direction. The drum beats had this peculiarity - though odd and mystical, there was

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Several Works by Edgar Allan Poe:

She shall press, ah, nevermore!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor. "Wretch," I cried, "thy God hath lent thee--by these angels he hath sent thee Respite--respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore! Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!" Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore."

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!--prophet still, if bird or devil!-- Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore, Desolate, yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted-- On this home by Horror haunted--tell me truly, I implore--

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Old Indian Legends by Zitkala-Sa:

sake of my little ones leave us in peace."

Mother badger, in her excited way, had pierced hard through the buckskin and stuck her fingers repeatedly with her sharp awl until she had laid aside her work. Now, while her husband was talking to the bear, she motioned with her hands to the children. On tiptoe they hastened to her side.

For reply came a low growl. It grew louder and more fierce. "Wa-ough!" he roared, and by force hurled the badgers out. First the father badger; then the mother. The little badgers he tossed by pairs. He threw them hard upon the ground. Standing in the entrance way and showing his ugly teeth, he snarled, "Be gone!"

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 Heart of the West by O. Henry:

knees, and galloped eastward past the store, where sat Sam trying his guitar in the moonlight.

Vaminos shall have a word--Vaminos the good dun horse. The Mexicans, who have a hundred names for the colours of a horse, called him /gruyo/. He was a mouse-coloured, slate-coloured, flea-bitten roan- dun, if you can conceive it. Down his back from his mane to his tail went a line of black. He would live forever; and surveyors have not laid off as many miles in the world as he could travel in a day.

Eight miles east of the Cibolo ranch-house Ranse loosened the pressure of his knees, and Vaminos stopped under a big ratama tree. The yellow ratama blossoms showered fragrance that would have undone the roses of


Heart of the West