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Today's Stichomancy for Claire Forlani

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Polly of the Circus by Margaret Mayo:

upon the pillow.

"You'll be all right soon," Douglas answered, cheerily. "Mandy and I will help the time to go."

"I recollect now," Polly faltered, without hearing him. "It was the last hoop. Jim seemed to have a hunch I was goin' to be in for trouble when I went into the ring. Bingo must a felt it, too. He kept a-pullin' and a-jerkin' from the start. I got myself together to make the last jump an'--I can't remember no more." Her head drooped and her eyes closed.

"I wouldn't try just now if I were you," Douglas answered tenderly.

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Resurrection by Leo Tolstoy:

"Dear me, Fanarin!" said Meslennikoff, with a grimace, recollecting how this Fanarin had examined him as a witness at a trial the year before and had, in the politest manner, held him up to ridicule for half an hour.

"I should not advise you to have anything to do with him. Fanarin est un homme tare."

"I have one more request to make," said Nekhludoff, without answering him. "There's a girl whom I knew long ago, a teacher; she is a very pitiable little thing, and is now also imprisoned, and would like to see me. Could you give me a permission to visit her?"

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The House of Dust by Conrad Aiken:

And necklaces that crumble if you touch them; And gold brocades that, breathed on, fall to rust.

'No--I am wrong . . . it is not these I sought for--! Why did they come to mind? You understand me-- You know these strange vagaries of the brain!--' --I walk alone in a forest of ghostly trees; Your pale hands rest palm downwards on your knees; These strange vagaries of yours are all too plain.

'But why perplex ourselves with tedious problems Of art or . . . such things? . . . while we sit here, living, With all that's in our secret hearts to say!--'

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 Concerning Christian Liberty by Martin Luther:

man is free from all things; so that he needs no works in order to be justified and saved, but receives these gifts in abundance from faith alone. Nay, were he so foolish as to pretend to be justified, set free, saved, and made a Christian, by means of any good work, he would immediately lose faith, with all its benefits. Such folly is prettily represented in the fable where a dog, running along in the water and carrying in his mouth a real piece of meat, is deceived by the reflection of the meat in the water, and, in trying with open mouth to seize it, loses the meat and its image at the same time.

Here you will ask, "If all who are in the Church are priests, by