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Today's Stichomancy for Bob Dylan

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Rise and Fall of Cesar Birotteau by Honore de Balzac:

accusation for a capital offence. Popinot the judge, who presided at the trial, released him on the ground that it was nothing worse than his imprudent folly which had mixed him up in the affair. A judge anxious to please the powers in office, or a rabid royalist, would have sent the luckless traveller to the scaffold. Gaudissart, who believed he owed his life to the judge, cherished the grief of being unable to make his savior any other return than that of sterile gratitude. As he could not thank a judge for doing justice, he went to the Ragons and declared himself liege-vassal forever to the house of Popinot.

While waiting about for Gaudissart, Anselme naturally went to look at


Rise and Fall of Cesar Birotteau
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Goodness of St. Rocque and Other Stories by Alice Dunbar:

"You did!"

"I tell you I didn't!" and Titee's hard little fist planted a punctuation mark on his comrade's eye.

A fight in the schoolyard! Poor Titee was in disgrace again. Still, in spite of his battered appearance, a severe scolding from the principal, lines to write, and a further punishment from his mother, Titee scarcely remained for his dinner, but was off down the railroad track with his pockets partly stuffed with the remnants of the scanty meal.

And the next day Titee was tardy again, and lunchless too, and the next, until the teacher, in despair, sent a nicely printed


The Goodness of St. Rocque and Other Stories
The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from 1984 by George Orwell:

tastes? Why should one feel it to be intolerable unless one had some kind of ancestral memory that things had once been different?

He looked round the canteen again. Nearly everyone was ugly, and would still have been ugly even if dressed otherwise than in the uniform blue overalls. On the far side of the room, sitting at a table alone, a small, curiously beetle-like man was drinking a cup of coffee, his little eyes darting suspicious glances from side to side. How easy it was, thought Winston, if you did not look about you, to believe that the physical type set up by the Party as an ideal--tall muscular youths and deep-bosomed maidens, blond-haired, vital, sunburnt, carefree--existed and even predominated. Actually, so far as he could judge, the majority of people


1984
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 Gift of the Magi by O. Henry:

End of this Project Gutenberg Etext of THE GIFT OF THE MAGI.


The Gift of the Magi