|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Moon-Face and Other Stories by Jack London:
of his tensed body, and she knew that spirit and flesh were relaxing together.
His resolution was ebbing. He would not speak--she knew it; and she knew,
likewise, with the sureness of faith, that it was because he could not.
She gazed despairingly before her, a numb feeling at her heart, as though hope
and happiness had died. She watched the sun flickering down through the
warm-trunked redwoods. But she watched in a mechanical, absent way. She looked
at the scene as from a long way off, without interest, herself an alien, no
longer an intimate part of the earth and trees and flowers she loved so well.
So far removed did she seem, that she was aware of a curiosity, strangely
impersonal, in what lay around her. Through a near vista she looked at a
buckeye tree in full blossom as though her eyes encountered it for the first
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Garden Party by Katherine Mansfield:
"Hail, brother! All hail, Thou Mighty One!" A velvety bass voice came
booming over the water.
Great Scott! Damnation take it! Stanley lifted up to see a dark head
bobbing far out and an arm lifted. It was Jonathan Trout--there before
him! "Glorious morning!" sang the voice.
"Yes, very fine!" said Stanley briefly. Why the dickens didn't the fellow
stick to his part of the sea? Why should he come barging over to this
exact spot? Stanley gave a kick, a lunge and struck out, swimming overarm.
But Jonathan was a match for him. Up he came, his black hair sleek on his
forehead, his short beard sleek.
"I had an extraordinary dream last night!" he shouted.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett:
ask folks now. My poor dear she was a great hand to draw young
I remembered that Mrs. Todd had once said that this old
fisherman had been sore stricken and unconsoled at the death of his
"I should like very much to come," said I. "Perhaps you are
going to be at home later on?"
Mr. Tilley agreed, by a sober nod, and went his way bent-
shouldered and with a rolling gait. There was a new patch high on
the shoulder of his old waistcoat, which corresponded to the
renewing of the Miranda's mainsail down the bay, and I wondered if
|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 Salammbo by Gustave Flaubert:
Salammbo waited; her frightened horse moved round and round, sniffing.
When Matho arrived the moon was rising behind her. But she had a
yellow veil with black flowers over her face, and so many draperies
about her person, that it was impossible to make any guess about her.
From the top of the terrace he gazed upon this vague form standing up
like a phantom in the penumbrae of the evening.
At last she said to him:
"Lead me to your tent! I wish it!"
A recollection which he could not define passed through his memory. He
felt his heart beating. The air of command intimidated him.
"Follow me!" he said.