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Today's Stichomancy for Fiona Apple

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Chouans by Honore de Balzac:

enemies, were apparently the best of friends. The young man then discovered that he felt as angry with Mademoiselle de Verneuil for her friendliness and freedom as he had been with her reserve. In fact, he was so annoyed by it that he regretted, with a sort of dumb anger, having allowed her to breakfast with them.

"Madame," said Mademoiselle de Verneuil, "is your son always as gloomy as he is at this moment?"

"Mademoiselle," he replied, "I ask myself what is the good of a fleeting happiness. The secret of my gloom is the evanescence of my pleasure."

"That is a madrigal," she said, laughing, "which rings of the Court


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

vigorous a movement that she cried aloud, in a voice that seemed like a sigh, "Poor babe!"

She said no more; there are ideas that a mother cannot bear. Incapable of reasoning at this moment, the countess was almost choked with the intensity of a suffering as yet unknown to her. Two tears, escaping from her eyes, rolled slowly down her cheeks, and traced two shining lines, remaining suspended at the bottom of that white face, like dewdrops on a lily. What learned man would take upon himself to say that the child unborn is on some neutral ground, where the emotions of its mother do not penetrate during those hours when soul clasps body and communicates its impressions, when thought permeates blood with

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Amy Foster by Joseph Conrad:

ning to find out what sort of man she had married. He looked upon the sea with indifferent, unseeing eyes. His wife had snatched the child out of his arms one day as he sat on the doorstep crooning to it a song such as the mothers sing to babies in his mountains. She seemed to think he was doing it some harm. Women are funny. And she had ob- jected to him praying aloud in the evening. Why? He expected the boy to repeat the prayer aloud after him by-and-by, as he used to do after his old father when he was a child--in his own country.


Amy Foster
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 Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen:

John Thorpe, who had only waited its arrival to begin his journey to London, prepared to set off. "Well, Miss Morland," said he, on finding her alone in the parlour, "I am come to bid you good-bye." Catherine wished him a good journey. Without appearing to hear her, he walked to the window, fidgeted about, hummed a tune, and seemed wholly self-occupied.

"Shall not you be late at Devizes?" said Catherine. He made no answer; but after a minute's silence burst out with, "A famous good thing this marrying scheme, upon my soul! A clever fancy of Morland's and Belle's.


Northanger Abbey