When her doctor informed her she must stop eating sugar, she followed his advice immediately. For months afterward, she would dream of an imaginary grocery store aisle with nothing but refrigerated cakes as far as they eye could see.

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Time to Dream Again

Lifting up, up, up off of the crinkly papered bed, she floated aboard the majestic, wooden air ship, where she slow-danced with Prince Charming’s handsome son, wearing a flowing ball gown that sparkled like diamonds in the melting lip-gloss gold sunset that the circus animal crew – elephants and zebras wearing colorful hats and silly shirts – was working to sail into, paddling their oars rhythmically against tufts of cumulonimbus clouds as if silently marking the beat of her dance. This was her favorite place to go whenever Mommy and the doctor started talking about her cancer.

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Message to a Jealous Wife

You still think I am coming to satisfy a hunger, but you are wrong: if I come into someone’s house and compliment their selection of art, it doesn’t mean I’ll stuff a statue under my overcoat on the way out. I am well-acquainted with your best possessions and I am uninterested in the inventory or in how you protect them.

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Piracy of the Mind

A Focus on the Family official recently warned parents not to let children dress as pirates, as the legendary figures conjure up nothing but “images of sweaty, half-naked men sleeping two sometimes three to a cot.” Then the official, Hugh Troy, closed his eyes and thought of the rigging, the peg legs, the drinking of grog, the “ol’ heigh-ho,” and soon he was hoisting his own main sail and drifting in his own Tropic of Capricorn where the decks always need swabbing and the booty is endless.

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Words of Wisdom Not Forgotten

No, no; don’t worry – this wasn’t going against that thing her parents had taught her when she was a little girl. Admiring from afar; sending the buttons flying as she used her eyes to rip the shirt off his chest; and imagining in graphic detail the sweat trapped between their bodies during a steamy encounter in the nearest motel: even though she had never met the guy, she was sure none of these things qualified as “talking to strangers.”

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The boy’s mother was insane, and everyone wondered what would become of him as a result. He could have followed in her footsteps, but instead he pushed himself harder than anyone else and became more successful than his classmates and friends with a happier provenance.

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Down, said the witch

The cool wind stirring through his hair and filling his nostrils, he opened his mouth to take in a deep breath of this sweet, new life, for he had finally made it to the top of the top; the summit of the mountain we call success. It felt good, really good there at the top, except for an acute, tugging pain in his abdomen that seemed to be nagging sadistically, cackling at him like an old witch, “There’s only one direction you can go now, buddy – hee-hee hee!”

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