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Today's Stichomancy for Bob Fosse

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad:

I felt how big, how confoundedly big, was that thing that couldn't talk, and perhaps was deaf as well. What was in there? I could see a little ivory coming out from there, and I had heard Mr. Kurtz was in there. I had heard enough about it, too-- God knows! Yet somehow it didn't bring any image with it-- no more than if I had been told an angel or a fiend was in there. I believed it in the same way one of you might believe there are inhabitants in the planet Mars. I knew once a Scotch sailmaker who was certain, dead sure, there were people in Mars. If you asked him for some idea how they looked and behaved, he would get shy and mutter something about `walking on all-fours.'

Heart of Darkness
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Maid Marian by Thomas Love Peacock:

At that moment the woman caught her husband's arm, and all the party following the direction of her eyes, looked simultaneously to the window, where they had just time to catch a glimpse of an apparition of an armed head, with its plumage tossing in the storm, on which the light shone from within, and which disappeared immediately.


O knight, thou lack'st a cup of canary. When did I see thee so put down?--Twelfth Night.

Several knocks, as from the knuckles of an iron glove, were given to the door of the cottage, and a voice was heard entreating shelter from the storm for a traveller who had lost his way.

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne:

to marry; they visit and take care of the sick by profession--I had rather, for my own part, they did it out of good-nature.

--She often told me, quoth Trim, she did it for the love of Christ--I did not like it.--I believe, Trim, we are both wrong, said my uncle Toby--we'll ask Mr. Yorick about it to-night at my brother Shandy's--so put me in mind; added my uncle Toby.

The young Beguine, continued the corporal, had scarce given herself time to tell me 'she would be my nurse,' when she hastily turned about to begin the office of one, and prepare something for me--and in a short time--though I thought it a long one--she came back with flannels, &c. &c. and having fomented my knee soundly for a couple of hours, &c. and made me a thin

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 Margret Howth: A Story of To-day by Rebecca Harding Davis:

old man would wring his hands, with a "Holloa! you're welcome home, Stephen, boy!" and Mrs. Howth would bring out the jars of pine-apple preserve which her sister sent her every year from the West Indies. And then---- Never mind what then. Stephen Holmes was very much in love, and this Christmas-day had much to bring him. Yet it was with a solemn shadow on his face that he watched the dawn, showing that he grasped the awful meaning of this day that "brought love into the world." Through the clear, frosty night he could hear a low chime of distant bells shiver the air, hurrying faint and far to tell the glad tidings. He fancied that the dawn flushed warm to hear the story,--that the very earth

Margret Howth: A Story of To-day