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Today's Stichomancy for Fritz Lang

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Padre Ignacio by Owen Wister:

"Do you know, I do not believe," said he, "that I should ever reach such contentment as yours."

"Perhaps you will," said Padre Ignacio, in a low voice.

"Never!" declared the youth. "It comes only to the few, I am sure."

"Yes. Only to the few," murmured the Padre.

"I am certain that it must be a great possession," Gaston continued; "and yet--and yet--dear me! life is a splendid thing!"

"There are several ways to live it," said the Padre.

"Only one for me!" cried Gaston. "Action, men, women, things--to be there, to be known, to play a part, to sit in the front seats; to have people tell one another, 'There goes Gaston Villere!' and to deserve one's

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane:

here is 'a yours or anybody else."

"Well, it ain't," said the friend mildly. "Still I hate t' see--"

There was a tangled argument.

"Well, he--," said the two, indicating their opponent with accusative forefingers.

The huge soldier was quite purple with rage. He pointed at the two soldiers with his great hand, extended clawlike. "Well, they--"

But during this argumentative time the de- sire to deal blows seemed to pass, although they

The Red Badge of Courage
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from 'Twixt Land & Sea by Joseph Conrad:

me a more amusing evening. And besides - business. The sacred business -.

In a barefooted negro who overtook me at a run and bolted down the landing-steps I recognised Jacobus's boatman, who must have been feeding in the kitchen. His usual "Good-night, sah!" as I went up my ship's ladder had a more cordial sound than on previous occasions.


I kept my word to Jacobus. I haunted his home. He was perpetually finding me there of an afternoon when he popped in for a moment from the "store." The sound of my voice talking to his Alice

'Twixt Land & Sea
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 Alcibiades II by Platonic Imitator:

And I perceive how many are the ills of which ignorance is the cause, since, as would appear, through ignorance we not only do, but what is worse, pray for the greatest evils. No man would imagine that he would do so; he would rather suppose that he was quite capable of praying for what was best: to call down evils seems more like a curse than a prayer.

SOCRATES: But perhaps, my good friend, some one who is wiser than either you or I will say that we have no right to blame ignorance thus rashly, unless we can add what ignorance we mean and of what, and also to whom and how it is respectively a good or an evil?

ALCIBIADES: How do you mean? Can ignorance possibly be better than knowledge for any person in any conceivable case?