|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Malbone: An Oldport Romance by Thomas Wentworth Higginson:
there are no parents to the fore. Put my shawl over you, so."
"O Blanche!" said Hope, "what injustice--"
"I've done myself?" said the volatile damsel. "Not a doubt of
it. That's my style, you know. But I have some sense; I know
who's who. Now, Jones, junior, make your man handle the
ribbons. I've always had a grudge against that ordinance about
fast driving, and now's our chance."
And the sacred "ordinance," with all other proprieties, was
left in ruins that day. They tore along the Avenue with
unexplained and most inexplicable speed, Hope being concealed
by riding backward, and by a large shawl, and Blanche and her
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The House of Dust by Conrad Aiken:
And after a while they will fall to dust and rain;
Or else we will tear them down with impatient hands;
And hew rock out of the earth, and build them again.
One, from his high bright window in a tower,
Leans out, as evening falls,
And sees the advancing curtain of the shower
Splashing its silver on roofs and walls:
Sees how, swift as a shadow, it crosses the city,
And murmurs beyond far walls to the sea,
Leaving a glimmer of water in the dark canyons,
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Eryxias by Platonic Imitator:
but, as I was saying, some one of them is thought in one place to be money,
and the possessors of it are the wealthy, whereas in some other place it is
not money, and the ownership of it does not confer wealth; just as the
standard of morals varies, and what is honourable to some men is
dishonourable to others. And if we wish to enquire why a house is valuable
to us but not to the Scythians, or why the Carthaginians value leather
which is worthless to us, or the Lacedaemonians find wealth in iron and we
do not, can we not get an answer in some such way as this: Would an
Athenian, who had a thousand talents weight of the stones which lie about
in the Agora and which we do not employ for any purpose, be thought to be
any the richer?
|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 Brother of Daphne by Dornford Yates:
he sliced into the sea.
"Seven," said I. " Not seven into the sea, you know. Seven
strokes. You've only hit three into the sea altogether."
"Isn't he clever with his sums? Here, give me another ball.
I handed him the last-named- a favourite cleek. The caddie had
gone to collect the flotsam.
"Now then. Ladies and gentlemen, with your kind permission I
shall now proceed to beat the sphere into the sky."
It was a tremendous shot, and we could see that it must have
reached the green; but when we came up and found the ball in the
The Brother of Daphne