|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Battle of the Books by Jonathan Swift:
steed, the slowness of whose pace was an effect of the highest
mettle and vigour. He cast his eye on the adverse wing, with a
desire to find an object worthy of his valour, when behold upon a
sorrel gelding of a monstrous size appeared a foe, issuing from
among the thickest of the enemy's squadrons; but his speed was less
than his noise; for his horse, old and lean, spent the dregs of his
strength in a high trot, which, though it made slow advances, yet
caused a loud clashing of his armour, terrible to hear. The two
cavaliers had now approached within the throw of a lance, when the
stranger desired a parley, and, lifting up the visor of his helmet,
a face hardly appeared from within which, after a pause, was known
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Start in Life by Honore de Balzac:
"He asks too much for the farm at the present moment."
"But why is he not coming to dinner as I requested?"
"Monseigneur, he is ill."
"Are you sure?"
"I have just come from there."
"Monsieur," said the count, with a stern air which was really
terrible, "what would you do with a man whom you trusted, if, after
seeing you dress wounds which you desired to keep secret from all the
world, he should reveal your misfortunes and laugh at your malady with
"I would thrash him for it."
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Moral Emblems by Robert Louis Stevenson:
III. THE DISPUTATIOUS PINES - The first pine to the second said
IV. THE TRAMPS - Now long enough had day endured
V. THE FOOLHARDY GEOGRAPHER - The howling desert miles around
VI. THE ANGLER AND THE CLOWN - The echoing bridge you here may
I. ROBIN AND BEN: OR, THE PIRATE AND THE APOTHECARY - Come, lend
me an attentive ear
II. THE BUILDER'S DOOM - In eighteen-twenty Deacon Thin
NOT I, AND OTHER POEMS
|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 Whirligigs by O. Henry:
shine? -- they're mine, Bibbsy -- all mine."
"You go in," said Bibb, "and take eight grains of
quinine, right away. It won't do in this climate for a
man to get to thinking he's Rockefeller, or James O'Neill
Inside, the purser was untying a great roll of newspapers,
many of them weeks old, gathered in the lower ports by
the Pajaro to be distributed at casual stopping-places.
Thus do the beneficent voyagers scatter news and enter-
tainment among the prisoners of sea and mountains.
Tio Pancho, the hotel proprietor, set his great silver-