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Today's Stichomancy for George Bernard Shaw

The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from Domestic Peace by Honore de Balzac:

"She is perhaps the widow of a man who is gambling," replied the handsome Colonel.

"To be sure; since the peace there are so many widows of that class!" said Martial. "But my dear Montcornet, we are a couple of simpletons. That face is still too ingenuous, there is too much youth and freshness on the brow and temples for her to be married. What splendid flesh-tints! Nothing has sunk in the modeling of the nose. Lips, chin, everything in her face is as fresh as a white rosebud, though the expression is veiled, as it were, by the clouds of sadness. Who can it be that makes that young creature weep?"

"Women cry for so little," said the Colonel.

The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from Kwaidan by Lafcadio Hearn:

at weddings must not be thought of as having any ghostly signification. As emblems they only express the joy of living union, and the hope that the newly married couple may pass through life together as a pair of butterflies flit lightly through some pleasant garden,-- now hovering upward, now downward, but never widely separating.


A small selection of hokku (1) on butterflies will help to illustrate Japanese interest in the aesthetic side of the subject. Some are pictures only,-- tiny color-sketches made with seventeen syllables; some are nothing more than pretty fancies, or graceful suggestions;-- but the reader will find variety. Probably he will not care much for the verses in themselves.

The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from The Poems of Goethe, Bowring, Tr. by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe:

From his example Learn we to know them!

For unfeeling Nature is ever: On bad and on good The sun alike shineth; And on the wicked, As on the best, The moon and stars gleam.

Tempest and torrent, Thunder and hail,