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Today's Stichomancy for Uma Thurman

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Memories and Portraits by Robert Louis Stevenson:

moments. In his recent AUTHOR OF BELTRAFFIO, so just in conception, so nimble and neat in workmanship, strong passion is indeed employed; but observe that it is not displayed. Even in the heroine the working of the passion is suppressed; and the great struggle, the true tragedy, the SCENE-A-FAIRE passes unseen behind the panels of a locked door. The delectable invention of the young visitor is introduced, consciously or not, to this end: that Mr. James, true to his method, might avoid the scene of passion. I trust no reader will suppose me guilty of undervaluing this little masterpiece. I mean merely that it belongs to one marked class of novel, and that it would have been very differently conceived and

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Research Magnificent by H. G. Wells:

young man? I suppose this girl of theirs goes out every evening-- Was she painted, Poff?"

She whipped him with her questions as though she was slashing his face. He became dead-white and grimly civil, answering every question as though it was the sanest, most justifiable inquiry.

"Of course I don't know who they are. How should I know? What need is there to know?"

"There are ways of finding out," she insisted. "If I am to go down and make myself pleasant to these people because of you."

"But I implore you not to."

"And five minutes ago you were imploring me to! Of course I shall."

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from A Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay:

so. They were travelling down hill at a swift pace, and looked neither to left nor right. They were naked. Their figures were shining against the black background of the forest with a pale, supernatural light - green and ghostly. When they were abreast of him, about twenty feet off, he perceived who they were. The first man was himself - Maskull. The second was Krag. The third man was Nightspore. Their faces were grim and set.

The source of the drumming was out of sight. The sound appeared to come from some point in front of them. Maskull and Dreamsinter put themselves in motion, to keep up with the swiftly moving marchers. At the same time a low, faint music began.

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 Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz by L. Frank Baum:

The girl laughed, and her mother said:

"We are not vain in the Valley of Voe, because we can not display our beauty, and good actions and pleasant ways are what make us lovely to our companions. Yet we can see and appreciate the beauties of nature, the dainty flowers and trees, the green fields and the clear blue of the sky."

"How about the birds and beasts and fishes?" asked Zeb.

"The birds we cannot see, because they love to eat of the damas as much as we do; yet we hear their sweet songs and enjoy them. Neither can we see the cruel bears, for they also eat the fruit. But the fishes that swim in our brooks we can see, and often we catch them to eat."


Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz