|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Marie by H. Rider Haggard:
"A dark saying," commented Retief. "But go, Allan, since you must, and
God bring you back safe again. It is clear that Dingaan did not ask
that you should come with me for nothing. Now I wish I had left you at
home with that pretty wife of yours."
So we parted, I going to the king's private enclosure on foot and
without my rifle, since I was not allowed to appear before him armed,
and the commandant towards the gate of the kraal accompanied by Hans,
who led my horse. Ten minutes later I stood before Dingaan, who greeted
me kindly enough, and began to ask a number of questions about the
Boers, especially if they were not people who had rebelled against their
own king and run away from him.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Intentions by Oscar Wilde:
MSS. They were probably very ordinary-looking people, with nothing
grotesque, or remarkable, or fantastic in their appearance. The
Middle Ages, as we know them in art, are simply a definite form of
style, and there is no reason at all why an artist with this style
should not be produced in the nineteenth century. No great artist
ever sees things as they really are. If he did, he would cease to
be an artist. Take an example from our own day. I know that you
are fond of Japanese things. Now, do you really imagine that the
Japanese people, as they are presented to us in art, have any
existence? If you do, you have never understood Japanese art at
all. The Japanese people are the deliberate self-conscious
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Hunting of the Snark by Lewis Carroll:
And collects--though it does not subscribe.
" Its flavor when cooked is more exquisite far
Than mutton, or oysters, or eggs:
(Some think it keeps best in an ivory jar,
And some, in mahogany kegs:)
"You boil it in sawdust: you salt it in glue:
You condense it with locusts and tape:
Still keeping one principal object in view--
To preserve its symmetrical shape."
The Butcher would gladly have talked till next day,
But he felt that the lesson must end,
The Hunting of the Snark
|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 Adventure by Jack London:
"But really . . . er . . . you know a chaperone is a necessary
evil," he objected.
"We've got along very nicely so far without one. Did I have one on
the Miele? And yet I was the only woman on board. There are only
three things I am afraid of--bumble-bees, scarlet fever, and
chaperones. Ugh! the clucking, evil-minded monsters, finding wrong
in everything, seeing sin in the most innocent actions, and
suggesting sin--yes, causing sin--by their diseased imaginings."
"Phew!" Sheldon leaned back from the table in mock fear.
"You needn't worry about your bread and butter," he ventured. "If
you fail at planting, you would be sure to succeed as a writer--