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Today's Stichomancy for Vladimir Putin

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Aeneid by Virgil:

And, whether o'er the seas or earth he flies, With rapid force they bear him down the skies. But first he grasps within his awful hand The mark of sov'reign pow'r, his magic wand; With this he draws the ghosts from hollow graves; With this he drives them down the Stygian waves; With this he seals in sleep the wakeful sight, And eyes, tho' clos'd in death, restores to light. Thus arm'd, the god begins his airy race, And drives the racking clouds along the liquid space; Now sees the tops of Atlas, as he flies,

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Intentions by Oscar Wilde:

for the drama. This should be determined by the general spirit of the play, more than by any actual historical references which may occur in it. Most HAMLETS I have seen were placed far too early. HAMLET is essentially a scholar of the Revival of Learning; and if the allusion to the recent invasion of England by the Danes puts it back to the ninth century, the use of foils brings it down much later. Once, however, that the date has been fixed, then the archaeologist is to supply us with the facts which the artist is to convert into effects.

It has been said that the anachronisms in the plays themselves show us that Shakespeare was indifferent to historical accuracy, and a

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Wrecker by Stevenson & Osbourne:

and between, on the narrow bight of blue horizon, Ua-pu upraise the ghost of her pinnacled mountain tops. But his mind would take no account of these familiar features; as he dodged in and out along the frontier line of sleep and waking, memory would serve him with broken fragments of the past: brown faces and white, of skipper and shipmate, king and chief, would arise before his mind and vanish; he would recall old voyages, old landfalls in the hour of dawn; he would hear again the drums beat for a man-eating festival; perhaps he would summon up the form of that island princess for the love of whom he had submitted his body to the cruel hands of 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 Letters of Two Brides by Honore de Balzac:

have felt, I suppose, in the same way, and put into the same words. You will laugh at me, as we do at the naive father who dilates on the beauty and cleverness of his (of course) quite exceptional offspring. But the refrain of my letter, darling, is this, and I repeat it: I am as happy now as I used to be miserable. This grange--and is it not going to be an estate, a family property?--has become my land of promise. The desert is past and over. A thousand loves, darling pet. Write to me, for now I can read without a tear the tale of your happy love. Farewell.