|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Alkahest by Honore de Balzac:
the disasters, but to give her further particulars, which were now
well known throughout the town. He told her that it was probably that
her husband owed considerable sums of money to the house which
furnished him with chemicals. That house, after making inquiries as to
the fortune and credit of Monsieur Claes, accepted all his orders and
sent the supplies without hesitation, notwithstanding the heavy sums
of money which became due. Madame Claes requested Pierquin to obtain
the bill for all the chemicals that had been furnished to her husband.
Two months later, Messieurs Protez and Chiffreville, manufacturers of
chemical products, sent in a schedule of accounts rendered, which
amounted to over one hundred thousand francs. Madame Claes and
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from She Stoops to Conquer by Oliver Goldsmith:
MARLOW. From the excellence of your cup, my old friend, I suppose you
have a good deal of business in this part of the country. Warm work,
now and then, at elections, I suppose.
HARDCASTLE. No, sir, I have long given that work over. Since our
betters have hit upon the expedient of electing each other, there is no
business "for us that sell ale."
HASTINGS. So, then, you have no turn for politics, I find.
HARDCASTLE. Not in the least. There was a time, indeed, I fretted
myself about the mistakes of government, like other people; but finding
myself every day grow more angry, and the government growing no better,
I left it to mend itself. Since that, I no more trouble my head about
She Stoops to Conquer
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Twice Told Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne:
it, till it seemed to be kindling with an internal heat, nor was
it unnatural to suppose that his breastplate would likewise
become red-hot with the angry fire of the bosom which it covered.
Arriving at the conclusion, he shook the letter fiercely in his
hand, so that it rustled as loud as the flag above his head.
"Black tidings these, Mr. Williams," said he; "blacker never came
to New England. Doubtless you know their purport?"
"Yea, truly," replied Roger Williams; "for the Governor
consulted, respecting this matter, with my brethren in the
ministry at Boston; and my opinion was likewise asked. And his
Excellency entreats you by me, that the news be not suddenly
Twice Told Tales
|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 Troll Garden and Selected Stories by Willa Cather:
the faculty and with his father that Paul's was a bad case.
The eastbound train was plowing through a January snowstorm;
the dull dawn was beginning to show gray when the engine whistled
a mile out of Newark. Paul started up from the seat where he had
lain curled in uneasy slumber, rubbed the breath-misted window
glass with his hand, and peered out. The snow was whirling in
curling eddies above the white bottom lands, and the drifts lay
already deep in the fields and along the fences, while here and
there the long dead grass and dried weed stalks protruded black
above it. Lights shone from the scattered houses, and a gang of
laborers who stood beside the track waved their lanterns.
The Troll Garden and Selected Stories