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Today's Stichomancy for Richard Burton

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Polity of Athenians and Lacedaemonians by Xenophon:

content to launch them into absolute independence.

[1] {eis to meirakiousthai}, "with reference to hobbledehoy-hood." Cobet erases the phrase as post-Xenophontine.

Here, again, Lycurgus took an entirely opposite view of the matter. This, if observation might be trusted, was the season when the tide of animal spirits flows fast, and the froth of insolence rises to the surface; when, too, the most violent appetites for divers pleasures, in serried ranks, invade[2] the mind. This, then, was the right moment at which to impose tenfold labours upon the growing youth, and to devise for him a subtle system of absorbing occupation. And by a crowning enactment, which said that "he who shrank from the duties

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Songs of Travel by Robert Louis Stevenson:

The muffled tramp of the Museum guard Once more went by me; I beheld again Lamps vainly brighten the dispeopled street; Again I longed for the returning morn, The awaking traffic, the bestirring birds, The consentaneous trill of tiny song That weaves round monumental cornices A passing charm of beauty. Most of all, For your light foot I wearied, and your knock That was the glad reveille of my day.

Lo, now, when to your task in the great house

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Prufrock/Other Observations by T. S. Eliot:

In a life composed so much, so much of odds and ends, (For indeed I do not love it ... you knew? you are not blind! How keen you are!) To find a friend who has these qualities, Who has, and gives Those qualities upon which friendship lives. How much it means that I say this to you-- Without these friendships--life, what cauchemar!" Among the windings of the violins And the ariettes Of cracked cornets


Prufrock/Other Observations
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 Shadow Line by Joseph Conrad:

miserable performance I go on, tramping, tramp- ing the deck. How many miles have I walked on the poop of that ship! A stubborn pilgrimage of sheer restlessness, diversified by short excursions below to look upon Mr. Burns. I don't know whether it is an illusion, but he seems to become more substantial from day to day. He doesn't say much, for, indeed, the situation doesn't lend itself to idle remarks. I notice this even with the men as I watch them moving or sitting about the decks. They don't talk to each other. It strikes me that


The Shadow Line