|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Emma McChesney & Co. by Edna Ferber:
little trick on Senor Pages, her blithe spirits sank. Suppose,
after all, that this powerful South American should resent her
little Yankee joke!
Her trunks went through the customs. She secured an interpreter.
She arranged her samples with loving care. Style, cut,
workmanship--she ran over their strong points in her mind. She
looked at them as a mother's eyes rest fondly on the shining
faces, the well-brushed hair, the clean pinafores of her brood.
And her heart swelled with pride. They lay on their tables, the
artful knickerbockers, the gleaming petticoats, the pink and blue
pajamas, the bifurcated skirts. Emma McChesney ran one hand
Emma McChesney & Co.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Life of the Spider by J. Henri Fabre:
continue, still visible, until the final collapse of the net.
And the Spider, without a stop of any kind, turns and turns and
turns, drawing nearer to the centre and repeating the operation of
fixing her thread at each spoke which she crosses. A good half-
hour, an hour even among the full-grown Spiders, is spent on spiral
circles, to the number of about fifty for the web of the Silky
Epeira and thirty for those of the Banded and the Angular Epeira.
At last, at some distance from the centre, on the borders of what I
have called the resting-floor, the Spider abruptly terminates her
spiral when the space would still allow of a certain number of
turns. We shall see the reason of this sudden stop presently.
The Life of the Spider
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from My Antonia by Willa Cather:
we realized what it was. On some upland farm, a plough had been
left standing in the field. The sun was sinking just behind it.
Magnified across the distance by the horizontal light, it stood out
against the sun, was exactly contained within the circle of the disk;
the handles, the tongue, the share--black against the molten red.
There it was, heroic in size, a picture writing on the sun.
Even while we whispered about it, our vision disappeared; the ball
dropped and dropped until the red tip went beneath the earth.
The fields below us were dark, the sky was growing pale,
and that forgotten plough had sunk back to its own littleness
somewhere on the prairie.
|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 Phoenix and the Turtle by William Shakespeare:
Seemeth this concordant one!
Love hath reason, reason none
If what parts can so remain.
Whereupon it made this threne
To the phoenix and the dove,
Co-supreme and stars of love;
As chorus to their tragic scene.
Beauty, truth, and rarity.
Grace in all simplicity,
Here enclos'd in cinders lie.