|The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Island Nights' Entertainments by Robert Louis Stevenson:
report, and a rifle bullet screeched in my ear. I swung straight
round and up with my gun, but the brute had a Winchester, and
before I could as much as see him his second shot knocked me over
like a nine-pin. I seemed to fly in the air, then came down by the
run and lay half a minute, silly; and then I found my hands empty,
and my gun had flown over my head as I fell. It makes a man mighty
wide awake to be in the kind of box that I was in. I scarcely knew
where I was hurt, or whether I was hurt or not, but turned right
over on my face to crawl after my weapon. Unless you have tried to
get about with a smashed leg you don't know what pain is, and I let
out a howl like a bullock's.
|The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Kenilworth by Walter Scott:
"Have I not already said, Tressilian," replied she, "that I will
surely come to my father, and that without further delay than is
necessary to discharge other and equally binding duties?--Go,
carry him the news; I come as sure as there is light in heaven
--that is, when I obtain permission."
"Permission!--permission to visit your father on his sick-bed,
perhaps on his death-bed!" repeated Tressilian, impatiently;
"and permission from whom? From the villain, who, under disguise
of friendship, abused every duty of hospitality, and stole thee
from thy father's roof!"
"Do him no slander, Tressilian! He whom thou speakest of wears a
|The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Allan Quatermain by H. Rider Haggard:
of men, be Thou with us in the hour of strife. When we go forth
into the shadow of death, make Thou us strong to conquer. Breathe
Thou upon our foes and scatter them; turn Thou their strength
to water, and bring their high-blown pride to nought; compass
us about with Thy protection; throw over us the shield of Thy
power; forget us not now in the hour of our sore distress; help
us now that the cruel man would dash our little ones against
the stones! Hear Thou our prayer! And for those of us who,
kneeling now on earth in health before Thee, shall at the sunrise
adore Thy Presence on the Throne, hear our prayer! Make them
clean, oh God; wash away their offences in the blood of the Lamb;
|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 A Voyage to Arcturus by David Lindsay:
"Why, what's the matter?"
Leehallfae pressed a hand to aer heart. "The stream leaves us, but
what makes the stream what it is continues with us. Faceny is
"But surely you don't expect to see him in person? Why are you
"Perhaps it will be too much for me after all."
"Why? How is it affecting you?"
The phaen took him by the shoulder and held him at arm's length,
endeavouring to study him with aer unsteady eyes. "Faceny's thoughts
are obscure. I am his lover, you are a lover of women, yet he grants