Tuesday, June 5, 2012

bibliomancy oracle update

Getting lots of positive feedback about the Bibliomancy Oracle. I'm still adding to it everyday and will be for the immediate future. It's been my impetus to discover some new (to me, at least) poetry magazines and read a lot more poems. When selecting texts, I try to include a variety of shades, different types of responses for the many types of questions that might be asked. While I try not to include anything that is obviously disturbing or ominous, there's no "you will perish tomorrow in a fiery automobile accident" response, the Oracle certainly can offer responses that people won't want to hear. Of course, the same response may be welcomed by one questioner to her answer while it may be taken less enthusiastically as the answer to another's question. The oracle is worthless if it's all sunshine and pixie sticks and one person's sunshine and pixie sticks is another's sunburn and smelling salts.

Also, a lot has to do with how the questioner interprets the answer. When you're looking for one thing, you might overlook what's being presented. Often times the answer someone is hoping to receive isn't really what would benefit her. Just because you want that job, or that particular lover, or whatever, doesn't mean it would bring the happiness you'd expect it. So a "it's not gonna happen" response doesn't necessarily mean doom and gloom.

I intend for the Oracle to be useful --whether it's used for perspective, guidance or creative prompts. Bibliomancy has a rich history and began during the early days of printed books. I love this anecdote mentioned in the bibliomancy Wikipedia entry:

English poet Robert Browning used this method to ask about the fate of his enchantment to Elizabeth Barret (later known as Elizabeth Barret Browning). He was at first disappointed to choose the book "Cerutti’s Italian Grammar", but on randomly opening it his eyes fell on the following sentence: ‘if we love in the other world as we do in this, I shall love thee to eternity' (which was a translation exercise).


  1. "One person's sunshine and pixie sticks is another's sunburn and smelling salts."

    That's a fantastic line. Bears repeating, rewriting, borrowing, lending, loaning.

    Love the Oracle, too. Thanks!