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Today's Stichomancy for Jay Leno

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Three Taverns by Edwin Arlington Robinson:

John Brown

Though for your sake I would not have you now So near to me tonight as now you are, God knows how much a stranger to my heart Was any cold word that I may have written; And you, poor woman that I made my wife, You have had more of loneliness, I fear, Than I -- though I have been the most alone, Even when the most attended. So it was God set the mark of his inscrutable Necessity on one that was to grope,

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Polly of the Circus by Margaret Mayo:

His voice was like a firebrand to Douglas. He turned upon him, white with rage.

"You drove her to this." His fists were clenched. He drew back to strike.

Jim came from behind the wagons just in time to catch the uplifted arm.

"Leave HIM to ME, this ain't no parson's job." The pastor lowered his arm, but kept his threatening eyes on the deacon's face.

"Where's Poll?" asked Jim.

"In there! Douglas pointed toward the main tent without turning

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Art of Writing by Robert Louis Stevenson:

of that little, beautiful brother whom we once all had, and whom we have all lost and mourned, the man we ought to have been, the man we hoped to be. But when word has been passed (even to an editor), it should, if possible, be kept; and if sometimes I am wise and say too little, and sometimes weak and say too much, the blame must lie at the door of the person who entrapped me.

The most influential books, and the truest in their influence, are works of fiction. They do not pin the reader to a dogma, which he must afterwards discover to be inexact; they do not teach him a lesson, which he must afterwards

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 Underdogs by Mariano Azuela:


At midnight Demetrio Macias ordered the march to be resumed. The town was five or six miles away; the best plan was to take the soldiers by surprise, before reveille.

The sky was cloudy, with here and there a star shining. From time to time a flash of lightning crossed the sky with a red dart, illumining the far horizon.

Luis Cervantes asked Demetrio whether the success of the attack might not be better served by procuring a guide or leastways by ascertaining the topographic conditions of the town and the precise location of the soldiers' quar-

The Underdogs