|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Love Songs by Sara Teasdale:
There was a new frail yellow moon to-night --
I wish you could have had it for a cup
With stars like dew to fill it to the brim. . . .
How cold it is! Even the lights are cold;
They have put shawls of fog around them, see!
What if the air should grow so dimly white
That we would lose our way along the paths
Made new by walls of moving mist receding
The more we follow. . . . What a silver night!
That was our bench the time you said to me
The long new poem -- but how different now,
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Altar of the Dead by Henry James:
of hers. He had wondered before at the coincidence of their
losses, especially as from time to time a new candle was set up.
On some occasion some accident led him to express this curiosity,
and she answered as if in surprise that he hadn't already
understood. "Oh for me, you know, the more there are the better -
there could never be too many. I should like hundreds and hundreds
- I should like thousands; I should like a great mountain of
Then of course in a flash he understood. "Your Dead are only One?"
She hung back at this as never yet. "Only One," she answered,
colouring as if now he knew her guarded secret. It really made him
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Mucker by Edgar Rice Burroughs:
fight off a whole troop of cavalry out here in the open. If you
take my horse we can both get out of it, and later I'll see you
in Rio. Good-bye, Billy, I'm off for town," and Bridge turned
and started back along the road on foot.
Billy watched him in silence for a moment. The truth of
Bridge's statement of fact was so apparent that Billy was
forced to accept the plan. A moment later he transferred the
bags of loot to Bridge's pony, swung into the saddle, and
took a last backward look at the diminishing figure of the
man swinging along in the direction of Cuivaca.
"Say," he muttered to himself; "but you're a right one,
|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 Trooper Peter Halket of Mashonaland by Olive Schreiner:
form a great party with you at its head, I shouldn't mind what you said.
But you, with your little figure and your little voice, who will ever
follow you? You will be left all alone; that is all the good that will
ever come to you through it.'
"And he said, 'Oh my wife, have I not waited and watched and hoped that
they who are nobler and stronger than I, all over this land, would lift up
their voices and speak--and there is only a deadly silence? Here and there
one has dared to speak aloud; but the rest whisper behind the hand; one
says, 'My son has a post, he would lose it if I spoke loud'; and another
says, 'I have a promise of land'; and another, 'I am socially intimate with
these men, and should lose my social standing if I let my voice be heard.'