|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Cruise of the Jasper B. by Don Marquis:
commotion of some sort on deck.
Two female voices, one of which they all recognized as that of
Miss Genevieve Pringle, were mingling in a babble of greeting,
expostulation, interjection, and explanation, and presently Miss
Pringle entered the cabin, followed by a younger lady who, except
for her youth, looked much like her.
"My niece, Miss Henrietta Pringle, of Flatbush," said Miss
Pringle, primly presenting her prim relation. "She has just
"With the plum preserves!" cried Lady Agatha.
"With the plum preserves," confirmed Miss Genevieve Pringle.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from The Wife, et al by Anton Chekhov:
native village, had never seen a town nor a railway in her life,
and had spent the last ten years sitting behind the stove, and
only at night going out into the street.
"What is there wonderful in that!" said Burkin. "There are plenty
of people in the world, solitary by temperament, who try to
retreat into their shell like a hermit crab or a snail. Perhaps
it is an instance of atavism, a return to the period when the
ancestor of man was not yet a social animal and lived alone in
his den, or perhaps it is only one of the diversities of human
character -- who knows? I am not a natural science man, and it is
not my business to settle such questions; I only mean to say that
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Market-Place by Harold Frederic:
That isn't at all what I want to do."
Her face as well as her silence showed her to be at a loss
for an appropriate comment. She was plainly surprised,
and seemingly embarrassed as well. "I'm sure you always
wish to be nice," she said at last. The words and tone
were alike gracious, but he detected in them somewhere
a perfunctory note.
"Oh--nice!" he echoed, in a sudden stress of impatience
with the word. "Damn being 'nice'! Anybody can be
'nice.' I'm thinking of something ten thousand times
bigger than being 'nice.'"
|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 Europeans by Henry James:
be like my asking you to buy me a bouquet and giving you the money.
I have no reason except that--somehow--it 's too violent an effort.
It is not inspiring. Would n't that serve as an excuse, in Boston?
I am told they are very sincere; they don't tell fibs.
And then Felix ought to go with me, and he is never in readiness.
I don't see him. He is always roaming about the fields and sketching
old barns, or taking ten-mile walks, or painting some one's portrait,
or rowing on the pond, or flirting with Gertrude Wentworth."
"I should think it would amuse you to go and see a few people,"
said Acton. "You are having a very quiet time of it here.
It 's a dull life for you."