|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from A House of Pomegranates by Oscar Wilde:
oval shields there were carbuncles, both wine-coloured and coloured
like grass. And yet I have told thee but a tithe of what was
'And when the Emperor had taken away his hands from before his face
he said to me: "This is my house of treasure, and half that is in
it is thine, even as I promised to thee. And I will give thee
camels and camel drivers, and they shall do thy bidding and take
thy share of the treasure to whatever part of the world thou
desirest to go. And the thing shall be done to-night, for I would
not that the Sun, who is my father, should see that there is in my
city a man whom I cannot slay."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells:
pours from volcanic clefts is wont to do. And where it came
upon water some chemical action occurred, and the surface
would be instantly covered with a powdery scum that sank
slowly and made way for more. The scum was absolutely
insoluble, and it is a strange thing, seeing the instant effect
of the gas, that one could drink without hurt the water from
which it had been strained. The vapour did not diffuse as a
true gas would do. It hung together in banks, flowing slug-
gishly down the slope of the land and driving reluctantly
before the wind, and very slowly it combined with the mist
and moisture of the air, and sank to the earth in the form
War of the Worlds
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Maria, or the Wrongs of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft:
to a rich old man, extremely jealous (no wonder, for she was a
charming creature); and that, in consequence of his treatment,
or something which hung on her mind, she had, during her first
lying-in, lost her senses."
What a subject of meditation--even to the very
confines of madness.
"Woman, fragile flower! why were you suffered to adorn a world
exposed to the inroad of such stormy elements?" thought Maria,
while the poor maniac's strain was still breathing on her ear,
and sinking into her very soul.
Towards the evening, Jemima brought her Rousseau's Heloise;
|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 Circular Staircase by Mary Roberts Rinehart:
left to the silence and heat, to the weight of the darkness, to
the oppression of walls that seemed to close in on me and stifle
The first warning I had was a stealthy fumbling at the lock of
the mantel-door. With my mouth open to scream, I stopped.
Perhaps the situation had rendered me acute, perhaps it was
instinctive. Whatever it was, I sat without moving, and some one
outside, in absolute stillness, ran his fingers over the carving
of the mantel and--found the panel.
Now the sounds below redoubled: from the clatter and jarring I
knew that several people were running up the stairs, and as
The Circular Staircase