|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Myths and Myth-Makers by John Fiske:
she hopped and skipped about the field where her husband stood
parleying with Old Nick. "there's a shot for you, fire away,"
said the Devil. "Of course I'll fire, but do you first tell me
what kind of a bird it is; else our agreement is cancelled,
Old Boy." There was no help for it; the Devil had to own
himself nonplussed, and off he fled, with a whiff of brimstone
which nearly suffocated the Freischutz and his good
 Thorpe, Northern Mythology, Vol. II. p. 259. In the
Norse story of "Not a Pin to choose between them," the old
woman is in doubt as to her own identity, on waking up after
Myths and Myth-Makers
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne:
alternately with her brother--'twas a Gascoigne roundelay.
Viva la Joia!
Fidon la Tristessa!
The nymphs join'd in unison, and their swains an octave below them--
I would have given a crown to have it sew'd up--Nannette would not have
given a sous--Viva la joia! was in her lips--Viva la joia! was in her eyes.
A transient spark of amity shot across the space betwixt us--She look'd
amiable!--Why could I not live, and end my days thus? Just Disposer of our
joys and sorrows, cried I, why could not a man sit down in the lap of
content here--and dance, and sing, and say his prayers, and go to heaven
with this nut-brown maid? Capriciously did she bend her head on one side,
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Two Poets by Honore de Balzac:
first time in her life she had been transported to the sphere which
was hers by right of nature. Judge, therefore, how unpleasantly she
was disturbed by Amelie, who took it upon herself to express the
"Nais," this voice broke in, "we came to hear M. Chardon's poetry, and
you are giving us poetry out of a book. The extracts are very nice,
but the ladies feel a patriotic preference for the wine of the
country; they would rather have it."
"The French language does not lend itself very readily to poetry, does
it?" Astolphe remarked to Chatelet. "Cicero's prose is a thousand
times more poetical to my way of thinking."
|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 Virginian by Owen Wister:
"Leakin', too," said a third.
"Well, my gracious!" said a fourth, and beat his knee in private
delight. None of them ever looked at me. For some reason I felt
exceedingly ill at ease.
"Good clothes in New York," said the third.
"Rich food," said the first.
"Fresh eggs, too," said the third.
"Well, my gracious!" said the fourth, beating his knee.
"Why, yes," observed the Virginian, unexpectedly; "they tell me
that aiggs there ain't liable to be so rotten as yu'll strike 'em
in this country."