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Today's Stichomancy for Madonna

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Eryxias by Platonic Imitator:

than the stranger?


SOCRATES: And if any one gave you a choice, which of these would you prefer?

ERASISTRATUS: That which was most valuable.

SOCRATES: In which way do you think you would be the richer?

ERASISTRATUS: By choosing as I said.

SOCRATES: And he appears to you to be the richest who has goods of the greatest value?


SOCRATES: And are not the healthy richer than the sick, since health is a

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Christ in Flanders by Honore de Balzac:

innumerable different impulses all repressed by hideous doubts--at this end, and at this only, the agony of fear.

Above all these human lives stood a strong man, the skipper; no doubts assailed him, the chief, the king, the fatalist among them. He was trusting in himself rather than in Providence, crying, "Bail away!" instead of "Holy Virgin," defying the storm, in fact, and struggling with the sea like a wrestler.

But the helpless poor at the other end of the wherry! The mother rocking on her bosom the little one who smiled at the storm; the woman once so frivolous and gay, and now tormented with bitter remorse; the old soldier covered with scars, a mutilated life the sole reward of

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Wrong Box by Stevenson & Osbourne:

of police to play on while his men are digging up your back garden.' Pitman stared at him in pained amazement.

'No, I'm not insane,' Michael went on. 'I'm playful, but quite coherent. See here, Pitman: follow me one half minute. I mean to profit by the refreshing fact that we are really and truly innocent; nothing but the presence of the--you know what--connects us with the crime; once let us get rid of it, no matter how, and there is no possible clue to trace us by. Well, I give you my piano; we'll bring it round this very night. Tomorrow we rip the fittings out, deposit the--our friend--inside, plump the whole on a cart, and carry it to the chambers of a young

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 The Ruling Passion by Henry van Dyke:

The smooth waves went crowding and shouldering down the slope as if they were running to a fight. The river rose and swelled with quick, uneven passion. The whirlpool was in its place one minute; the next, it was blotted out; everything rushed madly downward--and below was hell.

Jean checked the boat for a moment, quivering in the strong current, waiting for the TOURNIQUET to form again. Five seconds--ten seconds--"Now!" he cried.

The canoe shot obliquely into the stream, driven by strong, quick strokes of the paddles. It seemed almost to leap from wave to wave. All was going well. The edge of the whirlpool was near. Then came