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Today's Stichomancy for William Gibson

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Moon-Face and Other Stories by Jack London:

of it!"

It was only half rock he held in his hand. The other half was virgin gold. He dropped it into his pan and examined another piece. Little yellow was to be seen, but with his strong fingers he crumbled the rotten quartz away till both hands were filled with glowing yellow. He rubbed the dirt away from fragment after fragment, tossing them into the gold-pan. It was a treasure-hole. So much had the quartz rotted away that there was less of it than there was of gold. Now and again he found a piece to which no rock clung--a piece that was all gold. A chunk, where the pick had laid open the heart of the gold, glittered like a handful of yellow jewels, and he cocked his head at it and slowly turned it around and over to observe the rich play of the light upon

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from La Grenadiere by Honore de Balzac:

with uneasy forebodings; the exact danger he did not know, but dimly he felt it threatening in those purple rings about her eyes, in the deepening hollows under them, and the feverish red that deepened in her face. If Marie's play began to tire her, his sensitive tact was quick to discover this, and he would call to his brother:

"Come, Marie! let us run in to breakfast, I am hungry!"

But when they reached the door, he would look back to catch the expression on his mother's face. She still could find a smile for him, nay, often there were tears in her eyes when some little thing revealed her child's exquisite feeling, a too early comprehension of sorrow.

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Statesman by Plato:

of states, let us part them all off, and leave him alone; and, as I was saying, a model or example of this process has first to be framed.

YOUNG SOCRATES: Exactly.

STRANGER: What model is there which is small, and yet has any analogy with the political occupation? Suppose, Socrates, that if we have no other example at hand, we choose weaving, or, more precisely, weaving of wool-- this will be quite enough, without taking the whole of weaving, to illustrate our meaning?

YOUNG SOCRATES: Certainly.

STRANGER: Why should we not apply to weaving the same processes of division and subdivision which we have already applied to other classes;


Statesman
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 Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde:

I have to call for my husband at the club, to take him to some absurd meeting at Willis's Rooms, where he is going to be in the chair. If I am late he is sure to be furious, and I couldn't have a scene in this bonnet. It is far too fragile. A harsh word would ruin it. No, I must go, dear Agatha. Good-bye, Lord Henry, you are quite delightful and dreadfully demoralizing. I am sure I don't know what to say about your views. You must come and dine with us some night. Tuesday? Are you disengaged Tuesday?"

"For you I would throw over anybody, Duchess," said Lord Henry with a bow.

"Ah! that is very nice, and very wrong of you," she cried; "so mind you come"; and she swept out of the room, followed by Lady Agatha and the other ladies.

When Lord Henry had sat down again, Mr. Erskine moved round,


The Picture of Dorian Gray