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Today's Stichomancy for Robert De Niro

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson:


Treasure Island
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Arrow of Gold by Joseph Conrad:

"What do you mean? That she didn't want to. . . "

"Yes. A very good fight. I heard all about it. It is easy to blame her, but, as she asked me despairingly, could she go through life veiled from head to foot or go out of it altogether into a convent? No, she isn't guilty. She is simply - what she is."

"And what's that?"

"Very much of a woman. Perhaps a little more at the mercy of contradictory impulses than other women. But that's not her fault. I really think she has been very honest."

The voices sank suddenly to a still lower murmur and presently the shape of the man went out of the room. Monsieur George heard


The Arrow of Gold
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton:

"And you've told Coral?"

She felt his embrace relax. He drew away a little, still holding her, but with lowered head.

"No ... I ... haven't."

"Oh, Nick! But then--?"

He caught her to him again, resentfully. "Well--then what? What do you mean? What earthly difference does it make?"

"But if you've told her you were going to marry her--" (Try as she would, her voice was full of silver chimes.)

"Marry her? Marry her?" he echoed. "But how could I? What does marriage mean anyhow? If it means anything at all it

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 An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce:

spiders stretching their webs from twig to twig. He noted the prismatic colors in all the dewdrops upon a million blades of grass. The humming of the gnats that danced above the eddies of the stream, the beating of the dragon flies' wings, the strokes of the water spiders' legs, like oars which had lifted their boat -- all these made audible music. A fish slid along beneath his eyes and he heard the rush of its body parting the water.

He had come to the surface facing down the stream; in a moment the visible world seemed to wheel slowly round, himself the pivotal point, and he saw the bridge, the fort,


An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge