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Today's Stichomancy for Howard Stern

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Merry Men by Robert Louis Stevenson:

drowned in his recollections of the past; and sometimes he was broad awake, wondering at himself. But about the middle of the night he was startled by the voice of the dead miller calling to him out of the house as he used to do on the arrival of custom. The hallucination was so perfect that Will sprang from his seat and stood listening for the summons to be repeated; and as he listened he became conscious of another noise besides the brawling of the river and the ringing in his feverish ears. It was like the stir of horses and the creaking of harness, as though a carriage with an impatient team had been brought up upon the road before the courtyard gate. At such an hour, upon this rough and dangerous

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

upon the Arabs during a retreat before superior forces, he flung himself against the enemy, followed by only a single company, and fell in, unfortunately, with the main body of the enemy. The battle was bloody and terrible, man to man, and only a few horsemen escaped alive. Seeing that their colonel was surrounded, these men, who were at some distance, were unwilling to perish uselessly in attempting to rescue him. They heard his cry: "Your colonel! to me! a colonel of the Empire!" but they rejoined the regiment. Philippe met with a horrible death, for the Arabs, after hacking him to pieces with their scimitars, cut off his head.

Joseph, who was married about this time, through the good offices of

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Twice Told Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne:

revellers, and his left grasped the slender fingers of a fair maiden, not less gayly decorated than himself. Bright roses glowed in contrast with the dark and glossy curls of each, and were scattered round their feet, or had sprung up spontaneously there. Behind this lightsome couple, so close to the Maypole that its boughs shaded his jovial face, stood the figure of an English priest, canonically dressed, yet decked with flowers, in heathen fashion, and wearing a chaplet of the native vine leaves. By the riot of his rolling eye, and the pagan decorations of his holy garb, he seemed the wildest monster there, and the very Comus of the crew.


Twice Told Tales
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 Voice of the City by O. Henry:

"'Are ye the Park Commissioner?' I asks.

"'I own the Beersheba Flats,' says he. 'God bless the grass and the trees that give extra benefits to a man's tenants. The rents shall be raised fifteen per cent. to-morrow. Good-night,' says he."

THE EASTER OF THE SOUL

It is hardly likely that a goddess may die. Then Eastre, the old Saxon goddess of spring, must be laughing in her muslin sleeve at people who believe that Easter, her namesake, exists only along certain strips of Fifth Avenue pavement after church service.


The Voice of the City