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Today's Stichomancy for David Geffen

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Voice of the City by O. Henry:

What an inestimable boon it would have been if all the corporeal and spiritual facts pertaining to man bad thus been tunefully and logically inculcated in our youthful minds! But what we gained in anatomy, music and philosophy was meagre.

The other day I became confused. I needed a ray of light. I turned back to those school days for aid. But in all the nasal harmonies we whined forth from those bard benches I could not recall one that treated of the voice of agglomerated mankind.

In other words, of the composite vocal message of


The Voice of the City
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Ozma of Oz by L. Frank Baum:

little girl dared to resist its power, suddenly redoubled its fury. With a scream like that of an angry giant it tore away the ropes that held the coop and lifted it high into the air, with Dorothy still clinging to the slats. Around and over it whirled, this way and that, and a few moments later the chicken-coop dropped far away into the sea, where the big waves caught it and slid it up-hill to a foaming crest and then down-hill into a deep valley, as if it were nothing more than a plaything to keep them amused.

Dorothy had a good ducking, you may be sure, but she didn't loose her presence of mind even for a second. She kept tight hold of the stout slats and as soon as she could get the water out of her eyes she saw


Ozma of Oz
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Tapestried Chamber by Walter Scott:

his own hands, desiring those who were present to inform the champion that he, and no other, had possessed himself of the gage of defiance. But the champion was as much ashamed to face Bernard Gilpin as the officials of the church had been to displace his pledge of combat.

The date of the following story is about the latter years of Queen Elizabeth's reign; and the events took place in Liddesdale, a hilly and pastoral district of Roxburghshire, which, on a part of its boundary, is divided from England only by a small river.

During the good old times of RUGGING AND RIVING--that is, tugging and tearing--under which term the disorderly doings of the

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 School For Scandal by Richard Brinsley Sheridan:

looking face as any in the room, dead or alive. But I suppose uncle Oliver goes with the rest of the lumber?

CHARLES. No, hang it! I'll not part with poor Noll. The old fellow has been very good to me, and, egad, I'll keep his picture while I've a room to put it in.

SIR OLIVER. [Aside.] The rogue's my nephew after all!--[Aloud.] But, sir, I have somehow taken a fancy to that picture.

CHARLES. I'm sorry for't, for you certainly will not have it. Oons, haven't you got enough of them?

SIR OLIVER. [Aside.] I forgive him everything!--[Aloud.] But, Sir, when I take a whim in my head, I don't value money. I'll