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Today's Stichomancy for Oprah Winfrey

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from When a Man Marries by Mary Roberts Rinehart:

better speak up now. Later, it won't be so easy for him. It's a mighty poor joke."

But nobody spoke.


It was Betty Mercer who said she was hungry, and got us switched from the delicate subject of which was the thief to the quite as pressing subject of which was to be cook. Aunt Selina had slept quietly through the whole thing--we learned afterward that she customarily slept on her left side, which was on her good ear. We gathered in the Dallas Browns' room, and Jimmy proposed a plan.

"We can have anything sent in that we want," he suggested

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Mansion by Henry van Dyke:

"This," said the Keeper of the Gate, standing still and speaking with a low, distinct voice--"this is your mansion, John Weightman."

An almost intolerable shock of grieved wonder and indignation choked the man for a moment so that he could not say a word. Then he turned his face away from the poor little hut and began to remonstrate eagerly with his companion.

"Surely, sir," he stammered, "you must be in error about this. There is something wrong--some other John Weightman--a confusion of names--the book must be mistaken."

"There is no mistake," said the Keeper of the Gate, very calmly;

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Crito by Plato:

CRITO: Surely not, Socrates.

SOCRATES: And what of doing evil in return for evil, which is the morality of the many--is that just or not?

CRITO: Not just.

SOCRATES: For doing evil to another is the same as injuring him?

CRITO: Very true.

SOCRATES: Then we ought not to retaliate or render evil for evil to any one, whatever evil we may have suffered from him. But I would have you consider, Crito, whether you really mean what you are saying. For this opinion has never been held, and never will be held, by any considerable number of persons; and those who are agreed and those who are not agreed

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 Scenes from a Courtesan's Life by Honore de Balzac:

Josephine were busy at the tea-table. The Vidame de Pamiers, the Duc de Grandlieu, the Marquis d'Ajuda-Pinto, and the Duc de Maufrigneuse were playing Wisk, as they called it, in a corner of the room.

When Lucien was announced he walked across the room to make his bow to the Duchess, asking the cause of the grief he could read in her face.

"Madame de Chaulieu has just had dreadful news; her son-in-law, the Baron de Macumer, ex-duke of Soria, is just dead. The young Duc de Soria and his wife, who had gone to Chantepleurs to nurse their brother, have written this sad intelligence. Louise is heart-broken."

"A women is not loved twice in her life as Louise was loved by her husband," said Madeleine de Mortsauf.