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Today's Stichomancy for Stephen Colbert

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from The Son of Tarzan by Edgar Rice Burroughs:

crushed her to him. She looked up into his face, laughing, and then he bent and kissed her full upon the mouth. Even then she did not understand. She did not recall ever having been kissed before. It was very nice. Meriem liked it. She thought it was Korak's way of showing how glad he was that the great ape had not succeeded in running away with her. She was glad too, so she put her arms about The Killer's neck and kissed him again and again. Then, discovering the doll in his belt she transferred it to her own possession, kissing it as she had kissed Korak.

Korak wanted her to say something. He wanted to tell her how he loved her; but the emotion of his love choked him and the


The Son of Tarzan
The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Sophist by Plato:

leave out details, a certain degree of order begins to appear; at any rate we can make an order which, with a little exaggeration or disproportion in some of the parts, will cover the whole field of philosophy. But are we therefore justified in saying that ideas are the causes of the great movement of the world rather than the personalities which conceived them? The great man is the expression of his time, and there may be peculiar difficulties in his age which he cannot overcome. He may be out of harmony with his circumstances, too early or too late, and then all his thoughts perish; his genius passes away unknown. But not therefore is he to be regarded as a mere waif or stray in human history, any more than he is the mere creature or expression of the age in which he lives. His ideas are

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from The Young Forester by Zane Grey:

bothered me was the loss of my mustang and outfit; I could not reconcile myself to that. So I wandered about with a strange, full sense of freedom such as I had never before known. What was to be the end of my adventure I could not guess, and I wasted no time worrying over it.

The knowledge I had of forestry I tried to apply. I studied the north and south slopes of the canyon, observing how the trees prospered on the sunny side. Certain saplings of a species unknown to me had been gnawed fully ten feet from the ground. This puzzled me. Squirrels could not have done it, nor rabbits, nor birds. Presently I hit upon the solution. The bark and boughs of this particular sapling were food for deer, and to gnaw so high the deer must have stood upon six or seven feet of snow.


The Young Forester
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 Stories From the Old Attic by Robert Harris:

distressed pass, but you also let the criminals pass. I, on the other hand, provide the needed security to keep the land behind me safe from harm. I am a protector, and I defend this pass and the country well."

This dialogue continued for many years until one morning when suddenly the earth shook with great violence. So strong was the tremor that both the wall and the bridge were reduced to rubble at the bottom of the chasm. Not many months later men came to repair the damage. In the process of reconstruction, however, the stones that were once part of the bridge were used to rebuild the wall and the stones that were once part of the wall were used to rebuild