|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Buttered Side Down by Edna Ferber:
muskmelons which incites crime.
Queerly enough, the gazers before that window foot up the
same, year in, and year out, something after this fashion:
Item: One anemic little milliner's apprentice in coat and
shoes that even her hat can't redeem.
Item: One sandy-haired, gritty-complexioned man, with a
drooping ragged mustache, a tin dinner bucket, and lime on his
Item: One thin mail carrier with an empty mail sack, gaunt
cheeks, and an habitual droop to his left shoulder.
Item: One errand boy troubled with a chronic sniffle, a
Buttered Side Down
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Circular Staircase by Mary Roberts Rinehart:
cautiously before the door--it was not necessary to rouse Liddy--
and climbing up put on the ledge of the transom a small dressing-
mirror, so that any movement of the frame would send it crashing
down. Then, secure in my precautions, I went to bed.
I did not go to sleep at once. Liddy disturbed me just as I was
growing drowsy, by coming in and peering under the bed. She was
afraid to speak, however, because of her previous snubbing, and
went back, stopping in the doorway to sigh dismally.
Somewhere down-stairs a clock with a chime sang away the hours--
eleven-thirty, forty-five, twelve. And then the lights went out
to stay. The Casanova Electric Company shuts up shop and goes
The Circular Staircase
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Selected Writings of Guy De Maupassant by Guy De Maupassant:
"I saw Lucy growing older and older, striving against those
accumulating years which bring wrinkles in the face, produce a
double chin and crow's-feet, and spoil the mouth. THEY ALMOST
LOOKED LIKE TWINS.
"I suffered so, that I thought I should go mad. Yet in spite of
myself, instead of shaking off this feeling and making my escape
out of the theater, far away into the noise and life of the
boulevards, I persisted in looking at the other, at the old one,
in examining her, in judging her, in dissecting her with my eyes.
I got excited over her flabby cheeks, over those ridiculous
dimples, that were half filled up, over that treble chin, that
|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 Apology by Plato:
between us that you should hear me to the end: I have something more to
say, at which you may be inclined to cry out; but I believe that to hear me
will be good for you, and therefore I beg that you will not cry out. I
would have you know, that if you kill such an one as I am, you will injure
yourselves more than you will injure me. Nothing will injure me, not
Meletus nor yet Anytus--they cannot, for a bad man is not permitted to
injure a better than himself. I do not deny that Anytus may, perhaps, kill
him, or drive him into exile, or deprive him of civil rights; and he may
imagine, and others may imagine, that he is inflicting a great injury upon
him: but there I do not agree. For the evil of doing as he is doing--the
evil of unjustly taking away the life of another--is greater far.