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Today's Stichomancy for Neil Gaiman

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Helen of Troy And Other Poems by Sara Teasdale:

Love brought no peace, nor darkness any rest. I crept and touched the foam with fevered hands And cried to Love, from whom the sea is sweet, From whom the sea is bitterer than death. Ah, Aphrodite, if I sing no more To thee, God's daughter, powerful as God, It is that thou hast made my life too sweet To hold the added sweetness of a song. There is a quiet at the heart of love, And I have pierced the pain and come to peace. I hold my peace, my Cleis, on my heart;

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from On the Duty of Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau:

from, and what brought me there; and, when I had told him, I asked him in my turn how he came there, presuming him to be an honest an, of course; and as the world goes, I believe he was. "Why," said he, "they accuse me of burning a barn; but I never did it." As near as I could discover, he had probably gone to bed in a barn when drunk, and smoked his pipe there; and so a barn was burnt. He had the reputation of being a clever man, had been there some three months waiting for his trial to come on, and would have to wait as much longer; but he was quite domesticated and contented, since he got his board for nothing, and thought that he was


On the Duty of Civil Disobedience
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Magic of Oz by L. Frank Baum:

served, four servants entered bearing a huge cake, all frosted and decorated with candy flowers. Around the edge of the cake was a row of lighted candles, and in the center were raised candy letters that spelled the words:

OZMA'S Birthday Cake from Dorothy and the Wizard

"Oh, how beautiful!" cried Ozma, greatly delighted, and Dorothy said eagerly: "Now you must cut the cake, Ozma, and each of us will eat a piece with our ice-cream."


The Magic of Oz
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 Twenty Years After by Alexandre Dumas:

"Madame, credit the coadjutor, who is one of the most able politicians we have; the first available cardinal's hat seems to belong already to his noble brow."

"Ah! how much you have need of me, cunning rogue!" thought Gondy.

("And what will he promise us?" said D'Artagnan. "Peste, if he is giving away hats like that, Porthos, let us look out and both demand a regiment to-morrow. Corbleu! let the civil war last but one year and I will have a constable's sword gilt for me."

"And for me?" put in Porthos.


Twenty Years After