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Today's Stichomancy for Richard Branson

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence:

"Of course it is, my boy; and she must find it difficult."

"She does." Then he frowned swiftly. "If only she wouldn't put on her BLESSED airs!"

"It's only her first awkwardness, my boy. She'll be all right."

"That's it, mother," he replied gratefully. But his brow was gloomy. "You know, she's not like you, mother. She's not serious, and she can't think."

"She's young, my boy."

"Yes; and she's had no sort of show. Her mother died when she was a child. Since then she's lived with her aunt, whom she can't bear. And her father was a rake. She's had no love."


Sons and Lovers
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe:

WIFE. - That me would understand, that me fain see; if He teachee all good thing, He makee all good thing, He give all thing, He hear me when I say O to Him, as you do just now; He makee me good if I wish to be good; He spare me, no makee kill me, when I no be good: all this you say He do, yet He be great God; me take, think, believe Him to be great God; me say O to Him with you, my dear.

Here the poor man could forbear no longer, but raised her up, made her kneel by him, and he prayed to God aloud to instruct her in the knowledge of Himself, by His Spirit; and that by some good providence, if possible, she might, some time or other, come to have a Bible, that she might read the word of God, and be taught by


Robinson Crusoe
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Human Drift by Jack London:

even then going on in the forecastle. I began to grow angry. Jokes were all very well, but this was carrying the thing too far. I was the youngest on board, only a youth, and they had no right to play tricks on me of the order that I well knew in the past had made raving maniacs of men and women. I grew angrier and angrier, and resolved to show them that I was made of sterner stuff and at the same time to wreak my resentment upon them. If the thing appeared again, I made my mind up that I would go up to it-- furthermore, that I would go up to it knife in hand. When within striking distance, I would strike. If a man, he would get the knife-thrust he deserved. If a ghost, well, it wouldn't hurt the

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 Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce:

each adversary the satisfaction of thinking he has got what he ought not to have, and is deprived of nothing except what was justly his due.

COMPULSION, n. The eloquence of power.

CONDOLE, v.i. To show that bereavement is a smaller evil than sympathy.

CONFIDANT, CONFIDANTE, n. One entrusted by A with the secrets of B, confided by _him_ to C.

CONGRATULATION, n. The civility of envy.

CONGRESS, n. A body of men who meet to repeal laws.

CONNOISSEUR, n. A specialist who knows everything about something and


The Devil's Dictionary