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Today's Stichomancy for Joseph Stalin

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Dreams & Dust by Don Marquis:

Hounding you and haunting, Whip and follow after!

IV

SUNSET

I stood among the boats The sinking sun, the angry sun, Across the sullen wave Laid the sudden strength of his red wrath Like to a shaken glaive:-- Or did the sun pause in the west To lift a sword at me,

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Apology by Xenophon:

of the master, but for the rest a simple-minded man. He exclaimed very innocently, "But the hardest thing of all to bear, Socrates, is to see you put to death unjustly."[53]

[52] Cf. "Mem." III. xi. 17; Plut. "Cato min." 46 (Clough, iv. 417). See Cobet, "Pros. Xen." s.n.; cf. Plat. "Symp." 173; "Phaed." 54 A, 117 D; Aelian, "V. H." i. 16; Heges. "Delph." ap. Athen. xi. 507.

[53] Diog. Laert. ii. 5. 35, ascribes the remark to Xanthippe, and so Val. Max. 7. 2, Ext. 1.

Whereupon Socrates, it is said, gently stroked the young man's head: "Would you have been better pleased, my dear one, to see me put to


The Apology
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Within the Tides by Joseph Conrad:

Malay settlement had a right to be, this European woman coming swishing out of the long grass in a fanciful tea-gown thing, dingy pink satin, with a long train and frayed lace trimmings; her eyes like black coals in a pasty-white face. Davidson thought that he was asleep, that he was delirious. From the offensive village mudhole (it was what Davidson had sniffed just before) a couple of filthy buffaloes uprose with loud snorts and lumbered off crashing through the bushes, panic-struck by this apparition.

"The woman came forward, her arms extended, and laid her hands on Davidson's shoulders, exclaiming: 'Why! You have hardly changed at all. The same good Davy.' And she laughed a little wildly.


Within the Tides
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 Philebus by Plato:

terms 'a meeting of the waters'?

PROTARCHUS: By all means.

SOCRATES: There--I have let them in, and now I must return to the fountain of pleasure. For we were not permitted to begin by mingling in a single stream the true portions of both according to our original intention; but the love of all knowledge constrained us to let all the sciences flow in together before the pleasures.

PROTARCHUS: Quite true.

SOCRATES: And now the time has come for us to consider about the pleasures also, whether we shall in like manner let them go all at once, or at first only the true ones.