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Today's Stichomancy for Robert Downey Jr.

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Man against the Sky by Edwin Arlington Robinson:

A part, for most, unplayable; In fine, one pauses, half afraid To say for certain that he played.

For that, one may as well forego Conviction as to yes or no; Nor can I say just how intense Would then have been the difference To several, who, having striven In vain to get what he was given, Would see the stranger taken on By friends not easy to be won.

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Statesman by Plato:

YOUNG SOCRATES: That is a hope not lightly to be renounced.

STRANGER: Never, if I can help it; and, first, let me ask you a question.


STRANGER: Is not monarchy a recognized form of government?


STRANGER: And, after monarchy, next in order comes the government of the few?


STRANGER: Is not the third form of government the rule of the multitude, which is called by the name of democracy?


The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Art of Writing by Robert Louis Stevenson:

improbably rejoice to write it down even when it is mute or bears a different value.

Here, then, we have a fresh pattern - a pattern, to speak grossly, of letters - which makes the fourth preoccupation of the prose writer, and the fifth of the versifier. At times it is very delicate and hard to perceive, and then perhaps most excellent and winning (I say perhaps); but at times again the elements of this literal melody stand more boldly forward and usurp the ear. It becomes, therefore, somewhat a matter of conscience to select examples; and as I cannot very well ask the reader to help me, I shall do the next best by

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 The Koran:

Strike out for them, too, a parable of the life of this world; like water which we send down from the sky, and the vegetation of the earth is mingled therewith;-and on the morrow it is dried up, and the winds scatter it; for God is powerful over all.

Wealth and children are an adornment of the life of this world; but enduring good works are better with thy Lord, as a recompense, and better as a hope.

And the day when we will move the mountains, and thou shalt see the (whole) earth stalking forth; and we will gather them, and will not leave one of them behind. Then shall they be presented to thy Lord in ranks.-Now have ye come to us as we created you at first! nay,

The Koran