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Today's Stichomancy for Robert De Niro

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett:

minute and be all ready to start."

"I do feel condemned for havin' such hard thoughts o' William," openly confessed Mrs. Todd. She stood before us so large and serious that we both laughed and could not find it in our hearts to convict so rueful a culprit. "He shall have a good dinner to-morrow, if it can be got, and I shall be real glad to see William," the confession ended handsomely, while Mrs. Blackett smiled approval and made haste to praise the tea. Then I hurried away to make sure of the grocery wagon. Whatever might be the good of the reunion, I was going to have the pleasure and delight of a day in Mrs. Blackett's company, not to speak of Mrs. Todd's.

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Exiles by Honore de Balzac:

of those majestic trees that painters love; the trembling sapling takes shelter there from storms. One was a god, the other was an angel; one the poet that feels, the other the poet that expresses--a prophet in sorrow, a levite in prayer.

They went out together without speaking.

"Did you mark how he called him to him?" cried the sergeant of the watch when the footsteps of the couple were no longer audible on the strand. "Are not they a demon and his familiar?"

"Phooh!" puffed Jacqueline. "I felt smothered! I never marked our two lodgers so carefully. 'Tis a bad thing for us women that the Devil can wear so fair a mien!"

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Atheist's Mass by Honore de Balzac:

of the politician who lurked behind the man of science; he was able to foresee the mortifications that awaited the only sentiment that lay hid in a heart that was steeled, but not of steel.

One day Bianchon spoke to Desplein of a poor water-carrier of the Saint-Jacques district, who had a horrible disease caused by fatigue and want; this wretched Auvergnat had had nothing but potatoes to eat during the dreadful winter of 1821. Desplein left all his visits, and at the risk of killing his horse, he rushed off, followed by Bianchon, to the poor man's dwelling, and saw, himself, to his being removed to a sick house, founded by 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 Symposium by Xenophon:

to undergo the preliminary examination.[3] Attend to what I say, and please be good enough to answer.

[3] The {anakrisis}, or "previous inquiry" (before one of the archons) of parties concerned in a suit, to see whether the action lay. Cf. Plat. "Charm." 176 C. See Gow, "Companion," xiv. 74.

Crit. Do you be good enough yourself to put your questions.

Soc. Do you consider that the quality of beauty is confined to man, or is it to be found in other objects also? What is your belief on this point?

Crit. For my part, I consider it belongs alike to animals--the horse, the ox--and to many things inanimate: that is to say, a shield, a

The Symposium