The Dream / by Alex Williamson

That night he dreamt about his mother. In the dream, he was visiting the bungalow she shared with his elderly grandmother. As he was talking to his grandmother, his mother sat up in bed, effortlessly slid her legs over the edge, and lowered her feet with the certainty and determination of an infant copying an adult. Then she stood and up and held open her arms, as if to say ‘ta-da’, and she a little dance, like a Flapper girl, shimming from side-to-side, waggling jazz hands. That was when he knew he was dreaming. In the dream, he knew he was dreaming, even saying to himself, This is a dream. The joyfulness. His mother rarely gave herself to moments of frivolity or over-exuberance. She had always measured out her joy with care, like a scant teaspoon of sugar in her tea. In the dream, he could see her dancing in a grove of green trees. Everything was back to normal, except it wasn’t. That morning, after he woke, he retained the feeling that it had all been a joke, an elaborate hoax, that she might walk through the door at any moment.