|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne:
a little revived, and sent down into the kitchen, to let me know, that in
about ten minutes he should be glad if I would step up stairs.--I believe,
said the landlord, he is going to say his prayers,--for there was a book
laid upon the chair by his bed-side, and as I shut the door, I saw his son
take up a cushion.
I thought, said the curate, that you gentlemen of the army, Mr. Trim, never
said your prayers at all.--I heard the poor gentleman say his prayers last
night, said the landlady, very devoutly, and with my own ears, or I could
not have believed it.--Are you sure of it? replied the curate.--A soldier,
an' please your reverence, said I, prays as often (of his own accord) as a
parson;--and when he is fighting for his king, and for his own life, and
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving:
shaded by trees for about a quarter of a mile, where it crosses
the bridge famous in goblin story; and just beyond swells the
green knoll on which stands the whitewashed church.
As yet the panic of the steed had given his unskilful rider
an apparent advantage in the chase, but just as he had got half
way through the hollow, the girths of the saddle gave way, and he
felt it slipping from under him. He seized it by the pommel, and
endeavored to hold it firm, but in vain; and had just time to
save himself by clasping old Gunpowder round the neck, when the
saddle fell to the earth, and he heard it trampled under foot by
his pursuer. For a moment the terror of Hans Van Ripper's wrath
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Prufrock/Other Observations by T. S. Eliot:
The conscience of a blackened street
Impatient to assume the world.
I am moved by fancies that are curled
Around these images, and cling:
The notion of some infinitely gentle
Infinitely suffering thing.
Wipe your hand across your mouth, and laugh;
The worlds revolve like ancient women
Gathering fuel in vacant lots.
Rhapsody on a Windy Night
|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 Two Poets by Honore de Balzac:
impressionable minds. The brilliancy of his intellect had a keen
attraction for David. David admired his friend, while he kept him out
of the scrapes into which he was led by the furie francaise.
David, with his well-balanced mind and timid nature at variance with a
strong constitution, was by no means wanting in the persistence of the
Northern temper; and if he saw all the difficulties before him, none
the less he vowed to himself to conquer, never to give way. In him the
unswerving virtue of an apostle was softened by pity that sprang from
inexhaustible indulgence. In the friendship grown old already, one was
the worshiper, and that one was David; Lucien ruled him like a woman
sure of love, and David loved to give way. He felt that his friend's