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by Abigail Van Buren

DEAR ABBY: Last week, my 87-year-old Great Aunt Grace was transferred from the hospital to a convalescent facility for therapy following surgery. Her children all live far away. Because she is so special, I told them I would visit her often and take care of her needs. Shortly after her transfer, I visited her and asked if there was anything she wanted me to bring from her home. She asked me to bring her a couple of family photos and a booklet that she kept in her nightstand. She explained that when she was blue, reading it cheered her up.

Abby, it was your "Keepers" booklet. When I took it to her, she asked me to read to her from the booklet, because her glasses had been broken in the fall that fractured her hip. We both got a much-needed laugh from "The Monkey's Disgrace." Some of the pieces about children moved me deeply.

I would like to have a booklet for myself. I couldn't find it at the bookstore. Where can I get it? -- OLLIE IN CARSON CITY, NEV.

DEAR OLLIE: Thank you for the kind words about my booklet. It can be ordered by sending a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus a check or money order for $5 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Keepers Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 62054-0447. (Postage is included in the price.)

P.S. For those who are curious about "The Monkey's Disgrace," read on:

THE MONKEY'S DISGRACE

(Author Unknown)

Three monkeys sat in a coconut tree

Discussing things as they are said to be

Said one to the others, "Now listen, you two,

"There's a rumor around that can't be true

"That man descended from our noble race

"The very idea is a great disgrace.

"No monkey has ever deserted his wife

"Starved her babies and ruined her life.

"And you've never known a mother monk

"To leave her babies with others to bunk

"Or pass from one on to another

"Till they scarcely know who is their mother.

"Here's another thing a monkey won't do

"Go out at night and get on a stew

"Or use a gun or club or knife

"To take some other monkey's life.

"Yes, man descended, the ornery cuss

"But, brother, he didn't descend from us."

DEAR ABBY: My husband I have been happily married for four years. Recently I made the mistake of telling him about my wild sexual past, and now he doesn't trust me! I was only trying to be honest. Is this fair, Abby? -- MISUNDERSTOOD WIFE IN NORWALK, CALIF.

DEAR WIFE: It's not fair, but bear with it until your insecure spouse calms down and wises up. He is now comparing himself to all of the men you have slept with. Your husband doesn't view himself as the beneficiary of your vast experience. How shortsighted of him.

To receive a collection of Abby's most memorable -- and most frequently requested -- poems and essays, send a business-sized, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $5 (U.S. funds) to: Dear Abby -- Keepers Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054-0447. (Postage is included in the price.)

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