|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Dynamiter by Robert Louis Stevenson and Fanny Van De Grift Stevenson:
like the rubies that we seek.'
'Wench,' he cried, 'look before you; look at your steps. I
declare to Heaven, if you annoy me once again by looking
back, I shall remind you of the change in your position.'
A little after, I observed a worm upon the ground, and told,
in a whisper, that its touch was death. Presently a great
green serpent, vivid as the grass in spring, wound rapidly
across the path; and once again I paused and looked back at
my companion, with a horror in my eyes. 'The coffin snake,'
said I, 'the snake that dogs its victim like a hound.'
But he was not to be dissuaded. 'I am an old traveller,'
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Men of Iron by Howard Pyle:
The sound of the words aroused Myles. He advanced to the table,
and rested his hand upon it. "My Lord--my Lord," said he, "I know
not what to say, I--I am amazed and afeard."
"How! how!" cried Sir James Lee, harshly. "Afeard, sayst thou? An
thou art afeard, thou knave, thou needst never look upon my face
or speak to me more! I have done with thee forever an thou art
afeard even were the champion a Sir Alisander."
"Peace, peace, Lee," said the Earl, holding up his hand. "Thou
art too hasty. The lad shall have his will in this matter, and
thou and no one shall constrain him. Methinks, also, thou dost
not understand him. Speak from thy heart, Myles; why art thou
Men of Iron
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare:
Voice, gait, and action, of a gentlewoman;
I long to hear him call the drunkard husband;
And how my men will stay themselves from laughter
When they do homage to this simple peasant.
I'll in to counsel them; haply my presence
May well abate the over-merry spleen,
Which otherwise would grow into extremes.
SCENE II. A bedchamber in the LORD'S house.
[SLY is discovered in a rich nightgown, with ATTENDANTS: some with
apparel, basin, ewer, and other appurtenances; and LORD, dressed
The Taming of the Shrew
|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 Alexander's Bridge by Willa Cather:
that made Alexander smile, even while a kind of
rapid excitement was tingling through him.
Blinking up at the lights, Mainhall added
in his luxurious, worldly way: "She's an elegant
little person, and quite capable of an extravagant
bit of sentiment like that. Here comes
Sir Harry Towne. He's another who's
awfully keen about her. Let me introduce you.
Sir Harry Towne, Mr. Bartley Alexander,
the American engineer."
Sir Harry Towne bowed and said that he had