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PAWS FOR ART: Mr. McGehey’s Miracle Pills

“Gather round!” the salesman shouted, “Gather round and hear me tell of the miracle of the century!”

His black beady eyes shone as he waved a grimy-gloved hand toward a large wooden crate. A large crowd had gathered around him by now, murmurs and speculations humming like a quiet group of bees. The man gave a crooked-tooth smile before continuing. “Man had finally gotten the upper hand on pestilence, on all things in this world that ail you!” the man called out. The people crowded closer among the man, eyes wide.

“Yes that’s right, we have found the cure! Y’see it’s all science,” the man bent down and took the lid off of the wooden crate, producing a small green-tinted glass bottle jingling with tiny capsules. “Yes, I said it’s science! Just think — influenza, the measles, the mumps —all cured! All cured with Mr. McGehey’s Miracle Pills!” The buzzing of the crowd began to grow louder.

“Now I know what you’re thinking — how is it possible for one tiny pill to solve all man’s ailments? I tell you it’s science! Mr. McGehey’s Miracle Pills contain a healthy mixture of vitamins and remedies approved by top chemists to do away with all of the common man’s illnesses and woes! And all for only fifty cents a bottle!”

The crowd cheered and began rummaging through their purses, grabbing out their fifty cents, and soon the salesman was swamped with slender fingers waving quarters. One by one, the salesman took their quarters, placing them in his suit pocket, and handed each customer a small green bottle of Mr. McGehey’s Miracle Pills.

As soon as the optimistic hands got a hold of their Mr. McGehey’s Miracle Pill bottle, they wasted no time in popping out the cork and dumping a slippery inky pill into their mouths. Once the crowd had dispersed, happily heading home with their Mr. McGehey’s Miracle Pill bottles and without a care in the world now that they had their cure, the salesman placed the lid back on the wooden crate and sat down, a bottle of Mr. McGehey’s Miracle Pills in his hand.  

Reaching into his briefcase, the salesman pulled out a small pack of round hard-candy and a jar of black writing ink. Quickly, he dunked the candy in the ink and set the fresh Mr. McGehey Miracle Pills out to dry.

This is an installment in The Retriever’s new creative writing section. If you would like to submit your creative writing or art for possible publication in The Retriever, please contact