|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Bucky O'Connor by William MacLeod Raine:
without a protest.
Double guard was on duty on account of the strained situation,
but the officer in charge, having been won over to the Valdez
side, had taken care to pick them with much pains. As a
consequence, the insurgents met friends in place of enemies, and
within three minutes controlled fully the palace. Every entrance
was at once closed and guarded, so that no news of the reversal
could reach the military barracks.
So silently had the palace been taken that, except the guards and
one or two servants held as prisoners, not even those living
within it were aware of anything unusual.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Heart of the West by O. Henry:
"'Look out, then, that you don't get stuck,' says I, kind of flip and
"Mame blushed. I didn't know what to think about her. My hopes raised
some that perhaps my attentions had palliated man's awful crime of
visibly introducing nourishment into his system. She talked some about
the stars, referring to them with respect and politeness, and I
drivelled a quantity about united hearts, homes made bright by true
affection, and the Kindler. Mame listened without scorn, and I says to
myself, 'Jeff, old man, you're removing the hoodoo that has clung to
the consumer of victuals; you're setting your heel upon the serpent
that lurks in the gravy bowl.'
Heart of the West
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Sarrasine by Honore de Balzac:
contracted his heart. He could do nothing but gaze at that
extraordinary woman, with inflamed, burning eyes. That feeble voice,
La Zambinella's attitude, manners, and gestures, instinct with
dejection, melancholy, and discouragement, reawakened in his soul all
the treasures of passion. Each word was a spur. At that moment, they
arrived at Frascati. When the artist held out his arms to help his
mistress to alight, he felt that she trembled from head to foot.
" 'What is the matter? You would kill me,' he cried, seeing that she
turned pale, 'if you should suffer the slightest pain of which I am,
even innocently, the cause.'
" 'A snake!' she said, pointing to a reptile which was gliding along
|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 Two Noble Kinsmen by William Shakespeare:
As to deny my act, but that I would not,
Should I try death by dussons.--I am mop't,
Food tooke I none these two daies,
Sipt some water. I have not closd mine eyes
Save when my lids scowrd off their brine; alas,
Dissolue my life, Let not my sence unsettle,
Least I should drowne, or stab or hang my selfe.
O state of Nature, faile together in me,
Since thy best props are warpt! So, which way now?
The best way is the next way to a grave:
Each errant step beside is torment. Loe,