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Put the Lid On I was told of a guided fantasy for coping with difficult people. Imagine some boxes, with lids. For each individual who is bothering you, put that person's troubles in a box and hand it back. I imagine those designer boxes bright cardboard with wallpaper patterns, for sale at Winners. Little boxes, made of ticky-tacky, for this, that and the other one. To M, I return her insatiable need for an audience. To F, and N, where I once worked, I give back all the leftovers from projects completed and all requests for my mind and time. For several people I have green-with-envy boxes to contain their malice and jealousy. For others, there are matchboxes squirming with wormy insults that made me writhe. To J, in an ancient, tattered diaper bag, I have bundled up those strange needs that manifest themselves in shabby treatment of me. For you, I have nothing at all. You and closed containers don't belong together.
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