|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Tales of Unrest by Joseph Conrad:
"Can you stand it?" and glared as if insane. Her eyes blazed, too. She
could not hear the appalling clamour of his thoughts. She suspected in
him a sudden regret, a fresh fit of jealousy, a dishonest desire of
evasion. She shouted back angrily--
He was shaken where he stood as if by a struggle to break out of
invisible bonds. She trembled from head to foot.
"Well, I can't!" He flung both his arms out, as if to push her away,
and strode from the room. The door swung to with a click. She made
three quick steps towards it and stood still, looking at the white and
gold panels. No sound came from beyond, not a whisper, not a sigh; not
Tales of Unrest
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from One Basket by Edna Ferber:
He treated it as a great adventure. Which, after all, it is.
Few adjuncts of our daily life contain the element of chance that
is to be found in a three-minute breakfast egg.
This was Orville Platt's method of attack: first, he chipped off
the top, neatly. Then he bent forward and subjected it to a
passionate and relentless scrutiny. Straightening--preparatory
to plunging his spoon therein--he flapped his right elbow. It
wasn't exactly a flap; it was a pass between a hitch and a flap,
and presented external evidence of a mental state. Orville Platt
always gave that little preliminary jerk when he was
contemplating a serious step, or when he was moved, or