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Today's Stichomancy for Nick Cave

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from In a German Pension by Katherine Mansfield:

like that--and yet--she was quite conscious of his nearness. Very quietly she got up, unhooked from the back of the door a long white gown, buttoned it on--smiling slyly. She did not know what was going to happen. She only thought: "Oh, what fun!" and that they were playing a delicious game--this strange man and she. Very gently she turned the door-handle, screwing up her face and biting her lip as the lock snapped back. Of course, there he was--leaning against the banister rail. He wheeled round as she slipped into the passage.

"Da," she muttered, folding her gown tightly around her, "I must go downstairs and fetch some wood. Brr! the cold!"

"There isn't any wood," volunteered the strange man. She gave a little cry

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from When the World Shook by H. Rider Haggard:

Marama departed in a great hurry, fearing lest the "god of the Mountain," or Bastin, whose new and splendid garb he regarded with much suspicion, might develop some evil energy against him. Then we went back to our camp, leaving the industrious Bastin, animated by a suggestion from Bickley that the fruit and food might spoil if left in the sun, to carry it into the shade of the cave. Owing to the terrors of the Orofenans the supply was so large that to do this he must make no fewer than seven journeys, which he did with great good will since Bastin loved physical exercise. The result on his clerical garments, however, was disastrous. His white tie went awry, squashed fruit and roast pig

When the World Shook
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Criminal Sociology by Enrico Ferri:


Bodily injury during a quarrel; Damages and fine: heavy for such slight and transitory malice; as can pay. Alternative blows; threats; slander; verbal penalty:--deduction from wages, insults or forced labour. Imprisonment in case of refusal.

Malicious injury or disfigurement; Criminal lunatic asylum (for mutilation; rape or outrage with hysterical or epileptic), or violence; restraint on personal Transportation for an indefinite liberty period, with supervision from 5 to 10 years.

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 Modeste Mignon by Honore de Balzac:

his loss and also the terrible results on your mother's health and eyesight; prepare him for the shock he has to meet. I will engage to get the letter into his hands before he reaches Havre, for he will have to pass through Paris on his way. Write him a long letter; you have plenty of time. I will take the letter on Monday; Monday I shall probably go to Paris."

Modeste was so afraid that Canalis and Dumay would meet that she started hastily for the house to write to her poet and put off the rendezvous.

"Mademoiselle," said Dumay, in a very humble manner and barring Modeste's way, "may your father find his daughter with no other

Modeste Mignon