|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy:
he would wisely have abstained from repeating.
On a summons by Grammer Oliver to breakfast, he left the shed.
Reaching the kitchen, where the family breakfasted in winter to
save house-labor, he sat down by the fire, and looked a long time
at the pair of dancing shadows cast by each fire-iron and dog-knob
on the whitewashed chimney-corner--a yellow one from the window,
and a blue one from the fire.
"I don't quite know what to do to-day," he said to his wife at
last. "I've recollected that I promised to meet Mrs. Charmond's
steward in Round Wood at twelve o'clock, and yet I want to go for
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Plain Tales from the Hills by Rudyard Kipling:
she went about with her partners; and the more he stared, the more
taken was he. He could scarcely believe that this was the woman
with the red eyes and the black stuff gown who used to weep over
the eggs at breakfast.
Mrs. Hauksbee did her best to hold him in play, but, after two
dances, he crossed over to his wife and asked for a dance.
"I'm afraid you've come too late, MISTER Bremmil," she said, with
her eyes twinkling.
Then he begged her to give him a dance, and, as a great favor, she
allowed him the fifth waltz. Luckily 5 stood vacant on his
programme. They danced it together, and there was a little flutter
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Walden by Henry David Thoreau:
Or what if I were to allow -- would it not be a singular allowance?
-- that our furniture should be more complex than the Arab's, in
proportion as we are morally and intellectually his superiors! At
present our houses are cluttered and defiled with it, and a good
housewife would sweep out the greater part into the dust hole, and
not leave her morning's work undone. Morning work! By the blushes
of Aurora and the music of Memnon, what should be man's morning work
in this world? I had three pieces of limestone on my desk, but I
was terrified to find that they required to be dusted daily, when
the furniture of my mind was all undusted still, and threw them out
the window in disgust. How, then, could I have a furnished house?
|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 Ballads by Robert Louis Stevenson:
The fighter deadly to smite and the prater cunning of tongue,
The woman wedded and fruitful, inured to the pangs of birth,
And the maid that knew not of kisses, blindly sprawled on the earth.
From the hall Hiopa the king and his chiefs came stealthily forth.
Already the sun hung low and enlightened the peaks of the north;
But the wind was stubborn to die and blew as it blows at morn,
Showering the nuts in the dusk, and e'en as a banner is torn,
High on the peaks of the island, shattered the mountain cloud.
And now at once, at a signal, a silent, emulous crowd
Set hands to the work of death, hurrying to and fro,
Like ants, to furnish the fagots, building them broad and low,