|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Another Study of Woman by Honore de Balzac:
and the look of a man so deeply distressed, that I saw her too newly
assumed dignity giving way; she looked at me, took my hand, drew me
along almost, threw me on the sofa, but quite gently, and said after a
moment's silence, 'I am dreadfully unhappy, my dear fellow. Do you
love me?'--'Oh! yes.'--'Well, then, what will become of you?' "
At this point the women all looked at each other.
"Though I can still suffer when I recall her perfidy, I still laugh at
her expression of entire conviction and sweet satisfaction that I must
die, or at any rate sink into perpetual melancholy," de Marsay went
on. "Oh! do not laugh yet!" he said to his listeners; "there is better
to come. I looked at her very tenderly after a pause, and said to her,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Rape of Lucrece by William Shakespeare:
Which speechless woe of his poor she attendeth,
And his untimely frenzy thus awaketh:
'Dear Lord, thy sorrow to my sorrow lendeth
Another power; no flood by raining slaketh.
My woe too sensible thy passion maketh
More feeling-painful: let it then suffice
To drown one woe, one pair of weeping eyes.
'And for my sake, when I might charm thee so,
For she that was thy Lucrece,--now attend me;
Be suddenly revenged on my foe,
Thine, mine, his own: suppose thou dost defend me
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Bucky O'Connor by William MacLeod Raine:
passed, and his eyes asked a question. She shook her head,
unnoticed by Leroy. She would fight her own battle as long as she
could. It was to divert him that she proposed they go down to the
corral and look at the wild cattle the men had driven down. She
told him she had heard a great deal about them, but had never
seen any. If he would go with her she would like to look at them.
The outlaw was instantly at her service, and they sauntered
across. In her hand the girl carried a closed umbrella she had
been using to keep off the sun.
They stood at the gate of the corral looking at the long-legged,
shaggy creatures, as wild and as active almost as hill deer. On
|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 A Second Home by Honore de Balzac:
the prayerful saint by turns.--Do me the justice to confess that I am
no reprobate, no debauchee. My life was cleanly. Alas! after seven
years of wretchedness, the craving for happiness led me by an
imperceptible descent to love another woman and make a second home.
And do not imagine that I am singular; there are in this city
thousands of husbands, all led by various causes to live this twofold
"Great God!" cried the Countess. "How heavy is the cross Thou hast
laid on me to bear! If the husband Thou hast given me here below in
Thy wrath can only be made happy through my death, take me to