I dreamed I sat on the front doorstep of my house and listened to her talk. She spoke from some distance on the other side of the garden near the fishpond. She spoke clearly but the roar of the passing traffic drowned out many of her words. I could hear enough to know that she spoke of serious matters from the past. She filled in the missing pieces.
I moved to be closer and soon we sat together in the front seat of my stationary car. I was in the driver’s seat but she controlled the conversation.
‘I lost my baby,’ she said. Tears welled in the corners of her eyes and I knew then that she had not been entirely childless, as I had once thought. She now worked in the children’s hospital, and began to tell me about a mother she had met there.
‘She was psychotic.’
‘How do you know?’ I asked.
‘The way she held a photograph in front of me, then tore it into little pieces.’
‘I suppose it is the manner in which she did this that would let you know for sure,’ I said.
My car began to move into a slow roll. I pressed my foot hard against the brake but to no avail. We moved in slow motion and I worried that my car might run into my husband’s car now parked directly behind me. I turned the key, and my car and accelerated forward, but I knew I could not hold it still once I turned off the engine.
‘Can you use a rock against the back wheel?’ I asked and watched as she selected one of the biggest rocks from the garden bed and shoved it in place. At last we held firm.