|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Droll Stories, V. 1 by Honore de Balzac:
although Les Contes Drolatiques was completed and published in 1837,
the present is the first English version ever brought before the
London, January, 1874
FIRST TEN TALES
This is a book of the highest flavour, full of right hearty merriment,
spiced to the palate of the illustrious and very precious tosspots and
drinkers, to whom our worthy compatriot, Francois Rabelais, the
eternal honour of Touraine, addressed himself. Be it nevertheless
understood, the author has no other desire than to be a good
Droll Stories, V. 1
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from A Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay:
expanded nostrils and terrible eyes.
Sullenbode touched him lightly.
"What do you see, Maskull?"
"I see nothing."
The light shot up, until Maskull scarcely knew where he stood. It
burned with a fiercer and stranger glare than ever before. He forgot
the existence of Sullenbode. The drum beats grew deafeningly loud.
Each beat was like a rip of startling thunder, crashing through the
sky and making the air tremble. Presently the crashes coalesced, and
one continuous roar of thunder rocked the world. But the rhythm
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Old Indian Legends by Zitkala-Sa:
stood calmly by, counting on his fingers the buffalo as they
dropped dead to the ground. When the last one fell, he ran thither
and picking up his magic arrow wiped it carefully on the soft
grass. He slipped it into his long fringed quiver.
"He is going to make a feast for some hungry tribe of men or
beasts!" cried the hunters among themselves as they hastened away.
They were afraid of the stranger with the sacred arrow. When
the hunter's tale of the stranger's arrow reached the ears of the
chieftain, his face brightened with a smile. He sent forth fleet
horsemen, to learn of him his birth, his name, and his deeds.
"If he is the avenger with the magic arrow, sprung up from the
|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 Brother of Daphne by Dornford Yates:
Ten minutes later we left 'The Three Bulls.' I had thrown my
gauntlets on to the front seat before I entered the inn. As I
drew on the right one, I felt a sheet of paper in its cuff. I
plucked it out, wondering. It had been torn from the
writing-block, and bore the message I had written for Falcon the
night before. The signature was Evelyn Fairie, and underneath
had been added, "Castle Charing, Somerset. With my love."
I slipped it into my pocket and started the car.
"And how did Jilly get on?" I said abstractedly, as we rolled
down the street.
"Oh, Boy," she cried, "it was so funny. I'm sure they took me
The Brother of Daphne