Supernatural Fiction posted June 3, 2014

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Short Story-Contest Entry-Shakespeare's Muse

The Chosen Muse

by michaelcahill

Shakespeare's Muse Contest Winner 

With so many creatures of an inspirational nature gathered, a heated discourse can sometimes ensue. Every time a child is born, The Muses meet. It is often simply to receive an assignment. There is little discussion most times. Most people have an ordinary potential with ordinary expectations. That is not to say that a muse does not put forth every effort. It is the nature of a muse to tickle and cajole. It is not unusual for a human to surprise. The possibility is incentive enough to make the attempt.
Discussions can range from a resigned acceptance to an all-out conflagration of wills, for not every child exhibits equal potential. Not every child has a spark that attracts a fairy to dance. The son of John and Mary Shakespeare, William, had a spark that could barely be contained within one so small.
The Muses, great and small, quivered with excited interest in the newborn William. As with any conclave, there are rules. But, rules are debatable and open to interpretation. For the Muses, debating and interpretation flowed through their beings as naturally as an invisible breeze through the copse where lovers meet.
By all reckoning, Sensatillia had the right of first refusal. Choice was a given where creativity ruled the thinking process. A reluctant Muse proved to be unproductive and certainly not positive in nature. Reticence could produce spiteful and even deadly pairings. One inherently evil needs little more than an encouraging inner voice to create a monster.
"This is too big a task for Sensatillia. She makes allowances too readily. It portends a lack of boldness and the leanings of a doormat would result. She is simply unsuitable for a light of this luminosity." Lurinda made no secret of her interest in the infant William Shakespeare. She felt her bold vision a must consideration for this wondrous soul.
"Ha! Perhaps the rest of you wish to see such a fire consumed by its own indulgence, but I for one fear such a volatile liaison. I'm sure that we all vividly recall Caligula." Sonoralee smirked with the obvious reference that inevitably arose when Lurinda spoke.
Lurinda bristled. "Unfair! I did not act alone. And there were factors of disease that were unforeseen. Would that we all were not so meddlesome. But, I suppose that is our nature. How often do we suppress the desire to whisper in an open ear? No one is forced the listening." Lurinda burned with the truth of Caligula's hedonist fall into madness. "Besides, look at Conrad DeLatour. What does he do under the spell of Sensatillia? He tends to his rose bushes and petunias. Not a brush to canvass or a quill to paper to show for forty years of her inspiration."
Sensatillia answered to that. "And what of it? He flourishes and all that pass by his cottage breathe in the beauty of his artistry. You crave the testimonial. I bask in the joy of a life well lived and inspirational to his fellows. Yes, Lurinda, we do see through different eyes". Sensatillia considered value in a different light.
Fuschia smiled. She often held court, though not officially. No one could recall a time when she had not been there. She enjoyed the fervor, even after untold centuries. "What of those many souls that knew nothing of the brush or the quill? Did we not glow with the same fervor then? What remains of all those inspired creatures that took the first steps and gave name to everything considered now? What remains is the fact of them, Lurinda. It is all connected. They and we are all part of one thing. No one creates something wholly original. Each stands upon and beneath the other. It is Sensatillia's issue. There is no reason to deny her right and every reason to support it. Anything else?"
As quickly as matters stalled, they now went forward. A Muse doesn't dwell. Sensatillia held the key. She did not refuse, therefore she accepted. In an eye blink, she hovered over the crib of William Shakespeare. She lightly set down by his shoulder and near the ear into which she would whisper as long as he lived.

"Good can be found in the lowliest of stations. The most lost of souls can be found. Even in loss there is at least nobility." She smiled as she watched her thoughts fly around in his mind. She marveled at its complexity. It is all in how you look at it.

She sang softly as he slept,

Slide down the moonbeam- water is smiling
Fresh-misted air surrounds you beguiling
Starlight gleams dancing on lashes
Entering swift, awaking with splashes
Away on the wings of mystery fly
Tall shadows converge whispering, "Why?"
For naught is revealed by the sun
I'll tickle your soul… it's begun
All things revealed; no time to lose
Inclined close to thee; I'm your muse.

William Shakespeare slept the sweet sleep of the aware. He felt light dancing in his reverie and it brought him comfort. His mind longed to burst forth connecting one star to another. He dreamed of things that made him smile. He pondered the sadness of some dreams, trying to find the solace to soothe his aching heart. He slept the great sleep of potential. He longed to awaken.
Sensatillia felt the warm embrace of sunrise and leaned in close, "It is dawn. Awaken, this day is yours."


Shakespeare's Muse
Contest Winner


This is my favorite piece. One of the few of mine that I personally like. I hope you do too!
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