|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Animal Farm by George Orwell:
But that society has now been established. Clearly this song has no longer
Frightened though they were, some of the animals might possibly have
protested, but at this moment the sheep set up their usual bleating of
"Four legs good, two legs bad," which went on for several minutes and put
an end to the discussion.
So 'Beasts of England' was heard no more. In its place Minimus, the poet,
had composed another song which began:
Animal Farm, Animal Farm,
Never through me shalt thou come to harm!
and this was sung every Sunday morning after the hoisting of the flag.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Letters of Robert Louis Stevenson by Robert Louis Stevenson:
clearnesses and the trivialities of speech, not SUNG like a semi-
articulate lullaby. It will not please yourself as well, when you
come to give it us, but it will please others better. It will be
more of a whole, more worldly, more nourished, more commonplace -
and not so pretty, perhaps not even so beautiful. No man knows
better than I that, as we go on in life, we must part from
prettiness and the graces. We but attain qualities to lose them;
life is a series of farewells, even in art; even our proficiencies
are deciduous and evanescent. So here with these exquisite pieces
the XVIIth, XVIIIth, and IVth of the present collection. You will
perhaps never excel them; I should think the 'Hermes,' never.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Second Home by Honore de Balzac:
appearance of avarice and mystery, as in a miser's home, and the dank
scent of cold incense which gives a chill to the stale atmosphere of a
chapel. This methodical meanness, this narrowness of thought, which is
visible in every detail, can only be expressed by one word--Bigotry.
In these sinister and pitiless houses Bigotry is written on the
furniture, the prints, the pictures; speech is bigoted, the silence is
bigoted, the faces are those of bigots. The transformation of men and
things into bigotry is an inexplicable mystery, but the fact is
evident. Everybody can see that bigots do not walk, do not sit, do not
speak, as men of the world walk, sit, and speak. Under their roof
every one is ill at ease, no one laughs, stiffness and formality
|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 Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin A. Abbot:
and extraordinary Assembly of all the States of Flatland
a Bill proposing that in every Woman the half containing
the eye and mouth should be coloured red, and the other half green.
The Priests were to be painted in the same way, red being applied
to that semicircle in which the eye and mouth formed the middle point;
while the other or hinder semicircle was to be coloured green.
There was no little cunning in this proposal, which indeed emanated
not from any Isosceles -- for no being so degraded would have had
angularity enough to appreciate, much less to devise, such a model
of state-craft -- but from an Irregular Circle who, instead of being
destroyed in his childhood, was reserved by a foolish indulgence
Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions