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Today's Stichomancy for David Bowie

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Salammbo by Gustave Flaubert:

their scars and their recent wounds.

Four great funeral piles were erected for the men of Latin race, the Samnites, Etruscans, Campanians, and Bruttians.

The Greeks dug pits with the points of their swords. The Spartans removed their red cloaks and wrapped them round the dead; the Athenians laid them out with their faces towards the rising sun; the Cantabrians buried them beneath a heap of pebbles; the Nasamonians bent them double with ox-leather thongs, and the Garamantians went and interred them on the shore so that they might be perpetually washed by the waves. But the Latins were grieved that they could not collect the ashes in urns; the Nomads regretted the heat of the sands in which


Salammbo
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Monster Men by Edgar Rice Burroughs:

"I do not know that I care for you in that way at all."

"Think of Number Thirteen," he suggested. "It should not be difficult to decide."

"I could not marry you simply to escape a worse fate," replied the girl. "I am not that cowardly--but let me think it over. There can be no immediate danger, I am sure."

"One can never tell," replied von Horn, "what strange, new vagaries may enter a crazed mind to dictate this moment's action or the next."

"Where could we wed?" asked Virginia.

"The Ithaca would bear us to Singapore, and when we


The Monster Men
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Twice Told Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne:

were chasing behind. Just then the village clock tolled eight, and as each deep stroke fell, Dominicus gave a fresh bound and flew faster than before, till, dim in the solitary centre of the orchard, he saw the fated pear-tree. One great branch stretched from the old contorted trunk across the path, and threw the darkest shadow on that one spot. But something seemed to struggle beneath the branch!

The pedlar had never pretended to more courage than befits a man of peaceful occupation, nor could he account for his valor on this awful emergency. Certain it is, however, that he rushed forward, prostrated a sturdy Irishman with the butt end of his


Twice Told Tales
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 Dreams & Dust by Don Marquis:

With such an ecstasy Whenas the sun-god left the sky To mingle with the sea.

A CHRISTMAS GIFT

ALACK-A-DAY for poverty! What jewels my mind doth give to thee!

Carved agate stone porphyrogene, Green emerald and beryl green, Deep sapphine and pale amethyst, Sly opal, cloaking with a mist The levin of its love elate,