|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Mysterious Island by Jules Verne:
"Never, Pencroft, and especially if you make up your mind to stay there."
"That was made up long ago, my boy," answered Pencroft. "I shall expect
you. You will bring me your wife and children, and I shall make jolly chaps
of your youngsters!"
"That's agreed," replied Herbert, laughing and blushing at the same time.
"And you, Captain Harding," resumed Pencroft enthusiastically, "you will
be still the governor of the island! Ah, how many inhabitants could it
support? Ten thousand at least!"
They talked in this way, allowing Pencroft to run on, and at last the
reporter actually started a newspaper--the New Lincoln Herald!
So is man's heart. The desire to perform a work which will endure, which
The Mysterious Island
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Deserted Woman by Honore de Balzac:
crisis, which is neither spleen nor disgust, but combines all the
symptoms of both. When a human being is transplanted into an
uncongenial soil, to lead a starved, stunted existence, there is
always a little discomfort over the transition. Then, gradually, if
nothing removes him from his surroundings, he grows accustomed to
them, and adapts himself to the vacuity which grows upon him and
renders him powerless. Even now, Gaston's lungs were accustomed to the
air; and he was willing to discern a kind of vegetable happiness in
days that brought no mental exertion and no responsibilities. The
constant stirring of the sap of life, the fertilizing influences of
mind on mind, after which he had sought so eagerly in Paris, were
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Jerusalem Delivered by Torquato Tasso:
To have that castle fair of goodness raised:
She used those looks and smiles that most behoved
To melt the frost which his hard heart embraced,
And gainst his breast a thousand shot she ventured,
Yet was the fort so strong it was not entered.
The dame who thought that one blink of her eye
Could make the chastest heart feel love's sweet pain,
Oh, how her pride abated was hereby!
When all her sleights were void, her crafts were vain,
Some other where she would her forces try,
|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 Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs:
to the cabin. He would leave that forever behind him
with the great hopes he had nursed there of finding his own
race and becoming a man among men.
And the Frenchman? D'Arnot? What of him? He could get
along as Tarzan had. Tarzan did not want to see him more.
He wanted to get away from everything that might remind
him of Jane.
As Tarzan stood upon the threshold brooding, D'Arnot
had entered the cabin. Many comforts he saw that had been
left behind. He recognized numerous articles from the cruiser
--a camp oven, some kitchen utensils, a rifle and many
Tarzan of the Apes