|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Heroes by Charles Kingsley:
And old AEgeus looked on him, and loved him, as what fond
heart would not have done? But he only sighed, and said -
'It is little that I can give you, noble lad, and nothing
that is worthy of you; for surely you are no mortal man, or
at least no mortal's son.'
'All I ask,' said Theseus, 'is to eat and drink at your
'That I can give you,' said AEgeus, 'if at least I am master
in my own hall.'
Then he bade them put a seat for Theseus, and set before him
the best of the feast; and Theseus sat and ate so much, that
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Bucolics by Virgil:
And deign around thy temples to let creep
This ivy-chaplet 'twixt the conquering bays.
Scarce had night's chilly shade forsook the sky
What time to nibbling sheep the dewy grass
Tastes sweetest, when, on his smooth shepherd-staff
Of olive leaning, Damon thus began.
"Rise, Lucifer, and, heralding the light,
Bring in the genial day, while I make moan
Fooled by vain passion for a faithless bride,
For Nysa, and with this my dying breath
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Prufrock/Other Observations by T. S. Eliot:
Rode across the hills and broke them--
The barren New England hills
Riding to hounds
Over the cow-pasture.
Miss Nancy Ellicott smoked
And danced all the modern dances;
And her aunts were not quite sure how they felt about it,
But they knew that it was modern.
Upon the glazen shelves kept watch
Matthew and Waldo, guardians of the faith,
The army of unalterable law."
|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 Adieu by Honore de Balzac:
as sombre as the skies above them. Some memory of awful bitterness
distorted for a moment his features, but he said nothing. Like all
strong men, he drove down his emotions to the depths of his heart;
thinking perhaps, as simple characters are apt to think, that there
was something immodest in unveiling griefs when human language cannot
render their depths and may only rouse the mockery of those who do not
comprehend them. Monsieur d'Albon had one of those delicate natures
which divine sorrows, and are instantly sympathetic to the emotion
they have involuntarily aroused. He respected his friend's silence,
rose, forgot his fatigue, and followed him silently, grieved to have
touched a wound that was evidently not healed.