|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Dead Souls by Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol:
your Moscow handiwork--good only for an hour. No, he did it all
himself, even down to the varnishing."
Chichikov opened his mouth to remark that, nevertheless, the said
Michiev had long since departed this world; but Sobakevitch's
eloquence had got too thoroughly into its stride to admit of any
"And look, too, at Probka Stepan, the carpenter," his host went on. "I
will wager my head that nowhere else would you find such a workman.
What a strong fellow he was! He had served in the Guards, and the Lord
only knows what they had given for him, seeing that he was over three
arshins in height."
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from 1492 by Mary Johntson:
CHRISTMASTIDE, a year from the sinking of the
_Santa Maria_, came to nigh two thousand Christian men
dwelling in some manner of houses by a river in a
land that, so short time before, had never heard the word
``Christmas.'' Now, in Spain and elsewhere, men and
women, hearing Christmas bells, might wonder, ``What
are they doing--are they also going to mass--those
adventurers across the Sea of Darkness? Have they converted
the Indies? Are they moving happily in the golden,
spicy lands? Great marvel! Christ now is born there as
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Children of the Night by Edwin Arlington Robinson:
And own them, whatsoever their estate;
And some, for sorrow and self-scorn, are blind
With enmity for man's unguarded fate.
For some there is a music all day long
Like flutes in Paradise, they are so glad;
And there is hell's eternal under-song
Of curses and the cries of men gone mad.
Some say the Scheme with love stands luminous,
Some say 't were better back to chaos hurled;
And so 't is what we are that makes for us
The measure and the meaning of the world.
|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 Beauty and The Beast by Bayard Taylor:
I. There's no need of a collar at the plough-tail."
They went to rest, and on the morrow not only the boys, but their
father were in the field. Shrewd, quick, and strong, they made
available what they knew of farming operations, and disguised much
of their ignorance, while they learned. Henry Donnelly's first
public appearance had made a strong public impression in his favor,
which the voice of the older Friends soon stamped as a settled
opinion. His sons did their share, by the amiable, yielding temper
they exhibited, in accommodating themselves to the manners and ways
of the people. The graces which came from a better education,
possibly, more refined associations, gave them an attraction, which