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Today's Stichomancy for Colin Powell

The first excerpt represents the past or something you must release, and is drawn from Songs of Innocence and Experience by William Blake:

That picks up crumbs around the door.'

The Priest sat by and heard the child; In trembling zeal he seized his hair, He led him by his little coat, And all admired his priestly care.

And standing on the altar high, 'Lo, what a fiend is here!' said he: 'One who sets reason up for judge Of our most holy mystery.'

The weeping child could not be heard, The weeping parents wept in vain:

Songs of Innocence and Experience
The second excerpt represents the present or the deciding factor of the moment, and is drawn from Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy:

understood by a class to which social effort has become a stale matter. To argue upon the possibility of culture before luxury to the bucolic world may be to argue truly, but it is an attempt to disturb a sequence to which humanity has been long accustomed. Yeobright preaching to the Egdon eremites that they might rise to a serene comprehensiveness without going through the process of enriching themselves was not unlike arguing to ancient Chaldeans that in ascending from earth to the pure empyrean it was not necessary to pass first into the intervening heaven of ether.

Return of the Native
The third excerpt represents the future or something you must embrace, and is drawn from Astoria by Washington Irving:

consideration, whether they have not some claim to national attention and encouragement, from the nature and importance of their undertaking; which though hazardous and uncertain as concerns their private emolument, must, at any rate, redound to the public security and advantage. If their undertaking shall appear to be of the description given, they would further suggest to your honorable bodies, that unless they can procure a regular supply for the trade in which they are engaged, it may languish, and be finally abandoned by American citizens; when it will revert to its former channel, with additional, and perhaps with irresistible, power.