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Today's Stichomancy for Ambrose Bierce

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Kwaidan by Lafcadio Hearn:

Japanese verses about butterflies.

"And this season, O Butterfly, is indeed the season of your bright prosperity: so comely you now are that in the whole world there is nothing more comely. For that reason all other insects admire and envy you;-- there is not among them even one that does not envy you. Nor do insects alone regard you with envy: men also both envy and admire you. Soshu of China, in a dream, assumed your shape;-- Sakoku of Japan, after dying, took your form, and therein made ghostly apparition. Nor is the envy that you inspire shared only by insects and mankind: even things without soul change their form into yours;-- witness the barley-grass, which turns into a butterfly. [13]


Kwaidan
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from King James Bible:

rivers: Bashan languisheth, and Carmel, and the flower of Lebanon languisheth.

NAH 1:5 The mountains quake at him, and the hills melt, and the earth is burned at his presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein.

NAH 1:6 Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by him.

NAH 1:7 The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him.

NAH 1:8 But with an overrunning flood he will make an utter end of the place thereof, and darkness shall pursue his enemies.


King James Bible
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Tour Through Eastern Counties of England by Daniel Defoe:

hammer; if they had, perhaps they would have given some other account of it.

On the promontory of land which they call Beacon Hill and which lies beyond or behind the town towards the sea, there is a lighthouse to give the ships directions in their sailing by as well as their coming into the harbour in the night. I shall take notice of these again all together when I come to speak of the Society of Trinity House, as they are called, by whom they are all directed upon this coast.

This town was erected into a marquisate in honour of the truly glorious family of Schomberg, the eldest son of Duke Schomberg, who

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 Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling:

accommodation for seals of any place in all the world.

Sea Catch knew that, and every spring would swim from whatever place he happened to be in--would swim like a torpedo-boat straight for Novastoshnah and spend a month fighting with his companions for a good place on the rocks, as close to the sea as possible. Sea Catch was fifteen years old, a huge gray fur seal with almost a mane on his shoulders, and long, wicked dog teeth. When he heaved himself up on his front flippers he stood more than four feet clear of the ground, and his weight, if anyone had been bold enough to weigh him, was nearly seven hundred pounds. He was scarred all over with the marks of savage fights, but he was


The Jungle Book