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Today's Stichomancy for Oscar Wilde

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Faraday as a Discoverer by John Tyndall:

was reddened, declaring the presence of sulphuric acid; the second was browned, declaring the presence of the alkali soda. The dissolved salt, therefore, arranged in this fashion, was decomposed by the machine, exactly as it would have been by the voltaic current. When instead of using the positive conductor he used the negative, the positions of the acid and alkali were reversed. Thus he satisfied himself that chemical decomposition by the machine is obedient to the laws which rule decomposition by the pile.

And now he gradually abolishes those so-called poles, to the attraction of which electric decomposition had been ascribed. He connected a piece of turmeric paper moistened with the sulphate

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Edition of The Ambassadors by Henry James:

meanwhile on his own side cabled; he had but delayed that act till after his visit to Miss Gostrey, an interview by which, as so often before, he felt his sense of things cleared up and settled. His message to Mrs. Newsome, in answer to her own, had consisted of the words: "Judge best to take another month, but with full appreciation of all re-enforcements." He had added that he was writing, but he was of course always writing; it was a practice that continued, oddly enough, to relieve him, to make him come nearer than anything else to the consciousness of doing something: so that he often wondered if he hadn't really, under his recent stress, acquired some hollow trick, one of the specious arts of

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Tour Through Eastern Counties of England by Daniel Defoe:

to determine, who insist upon it that brutes cannot think.

Certain it is that the swallows neither come hither for warm weather nor retire from cold; the thing is of quite another nature. They, like the shoals of fish in the sea, pursue their prey; they are a voracious creature, they feed flying; their food is found in the air, viz., the insects, of which in our summer evenings, in damp and moist places, the air is full. They come hither in the summer because our air is fuller of fogs and damps than in other countries, and for that reason feeds great quantities of insects. If the air be hot and dry the gnats die of themselves, and even the swallows will be found famished for want, and fall down dead out of

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 Voice of the City by O. Henry:

Woods laid upon the table a small gold pencil in- tended for a watch-charm.

"It's the one I gave you the last Christmas we were in Saint Jo. I've got your shaving mug yet. I found this under a corner of the rug in Norcross's room. I warn you to be careful what you say. I've got it put on to you, Johnny. We were old friends once, but I must do my duty. You'll have to go to the chair for Norcross." Kernan laughed.

"My luck stays with me," said be. "Who'd have thought old Barney was on my trail!" He slipped


The Voice of the City