By Dasha Kelly Special to Published Feb 28, 2007 at 10:20 AM

I told a lie to my daughter.  An elaborate one … with props and everything!  See, her loose tooth finally popped out on Saturday morning. `Saturday afternoon, we put the tooth in an envelope and readied it beneath her pillow for You-Know-Who.  Saturday soon faded into Sunday and my daughter still had the tooth.

"Mama!  The Tooth Fairy didn’t come!” she called from her bed.

"She didn’t?!” I called back, feigning shock and cringing at myself.  "Let me call her.”

Yep.  I said it: Let me call the Tooth Fairy.

The lie starts here, people.

The next morning, beneath her pillow, my daughter found a handwritten note card from the Tooth Fairy explaining that she missed our house because she had gone to bed with a horrible cold.  “Thanks for the tooth!”

What?  The tooth fairy couldn’t have a little chest congestion?

Hey, I don’t even feel bad.  I know that honesty is the best policy blah blah blah but not at the price of telling a 5-year-old that the Tooth Fairy really fell asleep in the living room sipping whiskey, tooling around on My Space and watching “Law & Order.”

Not a chance.  And I’ll kill again!  I don’t consider them lies, I guess is the thing.  They’re more like placeholders until the time comes to smudge their Disney outlooks with streaks of grimy truths:  like the deal about Santa; that our sickly, pound-bound cat did not head off on an adventure to find his long-lost family; swimming pools do not have pee-detecting dyes; that looks, sadly, will always matter in this culture; and, yes, the Tooth Fairy is merely a tag-team of overly anxious parents who will fumble over the easy things every now and again.

And when I replace those “liberties” with facts they’ll be ready to digest, I’ll tell them how I only bent the truth because I loved them so much.

No lie.

Dasha Kelly Special to
Dasha Kelly is an eloquent and accomplished writer who is able to unfold the spoken word into a variety of precision tools: as a performer, lecturer, or instructor. On the creative side, Dasha has published a novel, All Fall Down and three audio compilations of her original poetry. These earned her a place in Written Word Magazine as one of the Top Ten Up-and-Coming Writers of the Midwest. The Milwaukeean performs her work regularly throughout the nation and has opened concerts for comedians Tommy Davidson and Damon Williams and neo-soul artist Angie Stone. In 2007, Dasha will appear on the sixth season of HBO presents Russell Simmons' Def Poetry Jam.