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MUSED Literary Magazine.
Letter to Our Readers
The English language can be playfully tricky in its interpretation of words. Take the simple four-letter-word FALL. It's the time of year we're entering. Autumn. Harvest season. But the fall is also an important part of a block-and-tackle setup on a ship. The falls are the critical ropes which give power to the unit. They are what cause the heavy item like the sails to lift up.

And that is what fall is to me. Not the tumbling down of a fawn on unsteady legs. Not the changing leaves plummeting groundward, for I think of autumn as when the foliage is still on the trees, glorious in crimson, tangerine, and copper. No, fall is when we lift up our gaze to soak in the beauty of nature. It is when we lift up our hearts in gracious thanks for all we have been blessed with. We lift up our souls to renew our quest for sharing compassion, love, and acceptance throughout the world.

Our images share this adoration of the preciously unique Earth we all share. We have sunflowers glowing in green and gold. A misty castle glimpsed in another dimension. An enigmatic doorway into who knows where.

Poetry delves into emotions and twines into our thoughts. Rains shimmy leaves and batter islands. A man amongst millions boldly carves his own path. A woman tussles with her ill body which keeps its secrets well hidden.

Fiction catches at the mind and gives it tugs in new directions. A woman is scattered here and there by the winds of fate. A young child struggles to understand life's new, dark twists. A daughter is brought low by the loss of her mother.

Non-fiction is where we connect with our fellow travelers on this too-short path called life. College friends hold each other through illness and change. A stranger becomes everything to a woman in distress. A girl learns the lesson that first impressions are often wrong.

Through it all, we open our eyes just a little wider. We breathe in the sense that every other person is facing their own dilemmas. They have their own challenges. We each deserve patience and understanding. For none of us chose where we were born. Most of us do not choose when we die. In between, we struggle to make our way through a world stuffed with hurdles and hidden dangers. Sometimes it is that one smile from a stranger which gives us the strength to take that next step.

Be that smile.