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Today's Stichomancy for Robert Oppenheimer

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Phantasmagoria and Other Poems by Lewis Carroll:

Of learning from a nobler time, And oil each other's little heads With mutual Flattery's golden slime:

And when the topmost height ye gain, And stand in Glory's ether clear, And grasp the prize of all your pain - So many hundred pounds a year -

Then let Fame's banner be unfurled! Sing Paeans for a victory won! Ye tapers, that would light the world, And cast a shadow on the Sun -

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Sportsman by Xenophon:

be taken, because in the act of running it will beat and batter its own face and body; if by the hind-leg, the clog comes trailing along and must needs impede the action of every limb. Sometimes, too, as it is whirled along it will come in contact with the forked branches of some tree, and then unless the animal can snap the rope in twain, she is fairly caught; there ends the chase. But even so, if caught in this way or overdone with fatigue, it were well not to come too close the quarry, should it chance to be a stag, or he will lunge out with his antlers and his feet; better therefore let fly your javelins from a distance.

These animals may also be captured without aid of gin or caltrop, by

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Unconscious Comedians by Honore de Balzac:

the sight of luxury silenced him, and put an end to the discussion. Too late he perceived that Bixiou had been making him pose.

At half-past five o'clock, the moment when Leon de Lora was making his evening toilet to the great wonderment of Gazonal, who counted the thousand and one superfluities of his cousin, and admired the solemnity of the valet as he performed his functions, the "pedicure of monsieur" was announced, and Publicola Masson, a little man fifty years of age, made his appearance, laid a small box of instruments on the floor, and sat down on a small chair opposite to Leon, after bowing to Gazonal and Bixiou.

"How are matters going with you?" asked Leon, delivering to Publicola

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 An Historical Mystery by Honore de Balzac:

have done more for my client's cause than anything I could have said."

The first day's session ended with this bold declaration, which surprised the judges and gave an advantage to the defence. The lawyers of the town and Bordin himself congratulated the young advocate. The prosecutor, uneasy at the assertion, feared that he had fallen into some trap; in fact he was really caught in a snare that was cleverly set for him by the defence and admirably played off by Gothard. The wits of the town declared that he had white-washed the affair and splashed his own cause, and had made the accused as white as the plaster itself. France is the domain of satire, which reigns supreme in our land; Frenchmen jest on a scaffold, at the Beresina, at the