|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Edition of The Ambassadors by Henry James:
he came out for--is he really, Strether? and I hadn't you at all in
my mind. I was thinking of Mr. Newsome, of whom we think so much
and with whom, precisely, Mrs. Pocock has given herself the
opportunity to take up threads. What a pleasure for you both!"
Madame de Vionnet, with her eyes on Sarah, bravely continued.
Mrs. Pocock met her handsomely, but Strether quickly saw she meant
to accept no version of her movements or plans from any other lips.
She required no patronage and no support, which were but other
names for a false position; she would show in her own way what she
chose to show, and this she expressed with a dry glitter that
recalled to him a fine Woollett winter morning. "I've never wanted
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Memoir of Fleeming Jenkin by Robert Louis Stevenson:
chafing sea; - Argentiera, Siphano, Scapho, Paros, Antiparos, and
late at night Syra itself. ADAM BEDE in one hand, a sketch-book in
the other, lying on rugs under an awning, I enjoyed a very pleasant
'Syra is semi-eastern. The pavement, huge shapeless blocks sloping
to a central gutter; from this bare two-storied houses, sometimes
plaster many coloured, sometimes rough-hewn marble, rise, dirty and
ill-finished to straight, plain, flat roofs; shops guiltless of
windows, with signs in Greek letters; dogs, Greeks in blue, baggy,
Zouave breeches and a fez, a few narghilehs and a sprinkling of the
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Spirit of the Border by Zane Grey:
throughout the quiet valley; and scarcely had the echoes died away when from
the village came answering shouts.
Once beyond the aisles of waving corn the hunter saw over the shoulders of his
captors the home of the redmen. A grassy plain, sloping gradually from the
woody hill to a winding stream, was brightly beautiful with chestnut trees and
long, well-formed lines of lodges. Many-hued blankets hung fluttering in the
sun, and rising lazily were curling columns of blue smoke. The scene was
picturesque and reposeful; the vivid hues suggesting the Indians love of color
and ornament; the absence of life and stir, his languorous habit of sleeping
away the hot noonday hours.
The loud whoops, however, changed the quiet encampment into a scene of
The Spirit of the Border
|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 Mistress Wilding by Rafael Sabatini:
of trading. They are overshrewd for an honest gentleman."
"You mean," she gasped, her hand pressed to her heart, her face a
deathly white, "you mean that you'll not save him?"
"I mean," said he, "that I will have no further bargains with you."
There was such hard finality in his tone that she recoiled, beaten
and without power, to return to the assault. She had played and lost.
She had yielded her lips to his kisses, and - husband though he might
be in name - shame was her only guerdon.
One look she gave him from out of that face so white and pitiful, then
with a shudder turned from him and fled his presence. He sprang after
her as the door closed, then checked and stood in thought, very grim