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Today's Stichomancy for Alan Greenspan

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

The untended dead, the Tropic sun - The thunder of the murderous gun - The cut-throat crew - the Captain's curse - The tempest blustering worse and worse - These have I known and these can stand, But you - I settle out of hand!'

Out flashed the cutlass, down went Ben Dead and rotten, there and then.

Poem: II - THE BUILDER'S DOOM

In eighteen-twenty Deacon Thin Feu'd the land and fenced it in,

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Ten Years Later by Alexandre Dumas:

such good principles." In fact, the children had surrounded D'Artagnan, whose horse, long sword, spurs, and martial air they very much admired. But above all, they admired his strong voice; so that, when he uttered his oath, the whole school cried out, "The devil take me!" with fearful bursts of laughter, shouts, and bounds, which delighted the musketeer, and bewildered the old pedagogue.

"There!" said he, "hold your tongues, you brats! You have come, M. d'Artagnan, and all my good principles fly away. With you, as usual, comes disorder. Babel is revived. Ah! Good Lord! Ah! the wild little wretches!" And the worthy


Ten Years Later
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Enchanted Island of Yew by L. Frank Baum:

servants met them. These servants, they found, were all dumb, so that should they escape from the palace walls they could tell no tales of the High Ki.

The prisoners now proceeded through several pairs of halls, winding this way and that, and at last came to a pair of golden double doors leading into the throne-room of the mighty High Ki. Here they all paused, and the Ki-Ki both turned to the prince and Nerle and said:

"You are the only persons, excepting ourselves and the palace servants, who have ever been permitted to see the High Ki of Twi. As you are about to die, that does not matter; but should you by any chance be permitted to live, you must never breathe a word of what you


The Enchanted Island of Yew
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 1984 by George Orwell:

then slowed down, turned, and made off in the opposite direction. When he had gone fifty metres he looked back. The street was not crowded, but already he could not distinguish her. Any one of a dozen hurrying figures might have been hers. Perhaps her thickened, stiffened body was no longer recognizable from behind.

'At the time when it happens,' she had said, 'you do mean it.' He had meant it. He had not merely said it, he had wished it. He had wished that she and not he should be delivered over to the----

Something changed in the music that trickled from the telescreen. A cracked and jeering note, a yellow note, came into it. And then--perhaps it was not happening, perhaps it was only a memory taking on the semblance


1984