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Today's Stichomancy for Igor Stravinsky

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Dawn O'Hara, The Girl Who Laughed by Edna Ferber:

They were dashing off a rollicking folk-song indoors. When it was finished there came a burst of laughter and the sharp spat of applauding hands, and shouts of approbation. The sounds seemed seared upon my brain. I rose and ran down the path toward the waiting machine. There in the darkness I buried my shamed face in my hands and prayed for the tears that would not come.

It seemed hours before I heard Von Gerhard's firm, quick tread upon the gravel path. He moved about the machine, adjusting this and that, then took his place at the wheel without a word. We glided out upon the smooth

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Black Tulip by Alexandre Dumas:

fortune, and be a rich man, and then, when you are driving in your own coach, riding your own horse, will you still look at poor Rosa, the daughter of a jailer, scarcely better than a hangman?"

Cornelius tried to contradict her, and certainly he would have done so with all his heart, and with all the sincerity of a soul full of love.

She, however, smilingly interrupted him, saying, "How is your tulip going on?"

To speak to Cornelius of his tulip was an expedient resorted to by her to make him forget everything, even Rosa herself.


The Black Tulip
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Richard III by William Shakespeare:

Revolving this will teach thee how to curse. QUEEN ELIZABETH. My words are dull; O, quicken them with thine! QUEEN MARGARET. Thy woes will make them sharp and pierce like mine. Exit DUCHESS. Why should calamity be full of words? QUEEN ELIZABETH. Windy attorneys to their client woes, Airy succeeders of intestate joys, Poor breathing orators of miseries, Let them have scope; though what they will impart Help nothing else, yet do they ease the heart.


Richard III
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 Life in the Iron-Mills by Rebecca Davis:

almost a hunchback. She trod softly, so as not to waken him, and went through into the room beyond. There she found by the half-extinguished fire an iron saucepan filled with cold boiled potatoes, which she put upon a broken chair with a pint-cup of ale. Placing the old candlestick beside this dainty repast, she untied her bonnet, which hung limp and wet over her face, and prepared to eat her supper. It was the first food that had touched her lips since morning. There was enough of it, however: there is not always. She was hungry,--one could see that easily enough,--and not drunk, as most of her companions would have been found at this hour. She did not drink, this


Life in the Iron-Mills