|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Prufrock/Other Observations by T. S. Eliot:
And in short, I was afraid.
And would it have been worth it, after all,
After the cups, the marmalade, the tea,
Among the porcelain, among some talk of you and me,
Would it have been worth while,
To have bitten off the matter with a smile,
To have squeezed the universe into a ball
To roll it toward some overwhelming question,
To say: "I am Lazarus, come from the dead,
Come back to tell you all, I shall tell you all"--
If one, settling a pillow by her head,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Dracula by Bram Stoker:
for we are losing time. The Count may come to Piccadilly earlier
than we think."
"Not so!" said Van Helsing, holding up his hand.
"But why?" I asked.
"Do you forget," he said, with actually a smile, "that last night
he banqueted heavily, and will sleep late?"
Did I forget! Shall I ever. . .can I ever! Can any of us
ever forget that terrible scene! Mina struggled hard to keep
her brave countenance, but the pain overmastered her and she put
her hands before her face, and shuddered whilst she moaned.
Van Helsing had not intended to recall her frightful experience.
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Modeste Mignon by Honore de Balzac:
know how happy that would make me. You ought to understand me by
this time; why will you not tell me the truth? I am no poet,--
except in heart, through love, through you. Oh! what power of
affection there is in me to keep me here in this hotel, instead of
mounting to Ingouville which I can see from my windows. Will you
ever love me as I love you? To leave Havre in such uncertainty! Am
I not punished for loving you as if I had committed a crime? But I
obey you blindly. Let me have a letter quickly, for if you have
been mysterious, I have returned you mystery for mystery, and I
must at last throw off my disguise, show you the poet that I am,
and abdicate my borrowed glory.
|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 Gift of the Magi by O. Henry:
all who give gifts these two were the wisest. O all who give
and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they
are wisest. They are the magi.
End of this Project Gutenberg Etext of THE GIFT OF THE MAGI.
The Gift of the Magi