MUSED
BellaOnline Literary Review
Hummingbird by Lisa Shea

Table of Contents

Letter to Our Readers
Lisa Shea With this autumn issue we have completed eight full cycles of Mused. The number eight is considered quite lucky in both the Japanese and Chinese cultures. Christians praise the eight blessings of the beatitudes. Jews celebrate Hanukkah for eight days. Buddhists follow the noble eightfold path to peace and serenity. Eight brings balance and celebration.

I wanted to take this fortuitous moment to thank each and every artist who entrusts us with their works Ė both the ones we publish and the ones we donít. It is a leap of faith to send in an artistic creation to any magazine and we applaud your courage. There are just so many of you who have become friends over the years. We look forward to the bugs, the landscapes, the delicate poetry and insightful stories.

Thank you, too, to the thousands and thousands of readers who eagerly await to each issue. It is your appreciation and enthusiasm which makes this all worthwhile. We have readers in Alaska and Hawaii, in South Africa and in China, in the outback of Australia and the mountains of Switzerland. We love hearing feedback from each and every one of you. Together we make each issue even better.

A warm thank you to the team at Mused. Every person here is a volunteer who invests hours and hours of attentive effort to help ensure each new issue outshines the previous ones. From carefully reading through the submissions to proofing the chosen works, every step is carefully attended to.

Diane Cipollo deserves extra mention. She singlehandedly creates the beautiful layout of every single issue. She finds color combinations, arrangements, and designs which showcase the beauty of our artists. And she is beyond patient with me as I get struck with bizarre combinations of insomnia and zombie-sleep which have content delayed until the very last moment. She is a consummate artist and talented designer.

The submissions for this auspicious eighth issue are just stunning. Several brought me to tears. There are poems about loving and poems about letting go. Stories that celebrate far off lands and whisper of broken trust. Tales of ghosts, new beginnings, and disintegrating lives. Each one shines.

Be inspired by what our artists offer Ė and then explore your own creativity. Pick up a camera, a brush, a pen, or a keyboard. Take that first step. Let your voice be heard. Itís the perfect day to begin.

Lisa Shea, Owner






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