|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Massimilla Doni by Honore de Balzac:
"The sun, monsieur, gives light and heat to the world, only because it
is at a distance of thirty-three millions of leagues. Get nearer to
it, and science warns you that it is not really hot or luminous,--for
science is of some use," he added, looking at Capraja.
"Not so bad for a Frenchman and a doctor," said Capraja, patting the
foreigner on the shoulder. "You have in those words explained the
thing which Europeans least understand in all Dante: his Beatrice.
Yes, Beatrice, that ideal figure, the queen of the poet's fancies,
chosen above all the elect, consecrated with tears, deified by memory,
and for ever young in the presence of ineffectual desire!"
"Prince," said the Duke to Emilio, "come and sup with me. You cannot
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Just Folks by Edgar A. Guest:
And he knows all the names of birds,
And how they call 'thout using words,
And where they live and what they eat,
And how they build their nests so neat.
He's lots of fun! Sometimes all day
He comes to visit me and play.
You see he's getting old, and so
To work he doesn't have to go,
And when it isn't raining, he
Drops in to have some fun with me.
He takes my hand and we go out
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Copy-Cat & Other Stories by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman:
of stately pines full of windy songs, and trem-
"It do sound like cats, ma'am," said another voice,
which was Jane's, the maid, who had brought Mrs.
Meeks, the housekeeper, a cup of hot water and
peppermint, because her dinner had disagreed with
"Just listen," said Mrs. Meeks.
"Yes, ma'am, I should think there was hundreds
of cats and little kittens."
"I am so afraid Mr. Van Ness will be disturbed."
|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 One Basket by Edna Ferber:
the kind of fellow they've got as escapement-room foreman, eh?"
Tessie, whose mind was working very clearly now, put out a quick
hand. "Say, it wasn't his fault. He's a bum, all right, but I
knew it, didn't I? It was me. I didn't care. Seemed to me it
didn't make no difference who I went with, but it does." She
looked down at her hands clasped so tightly in her lap.
"Yes, it makes a whole lot of difference," Angie agreed, and
looked up at her father.
At that Tessie blurted her last desperate problem: "He's
learning all kind of new things. Me, I ain't learning anything.
When Chuck comes home he'll just think I'm dumb, that's all.