The Crow of My Dreams
The first time he comes to me is in a dream, so handsome in his blue-black feather-coat. He perches on the bathroom sink as I brush my dream-teeth and crows that now that he has found me, he will never leave me.
I laugh and reply: "They all say that."
But when I open my eyes, he's still there, waiting on the pillow.
"You dreamed of me," he says.
"Yes, I did," I reply.
"So I came," he says.
"That's never happened before," I say.
For breakfast we share some toast. He says he prefers his burnt black, but when I offer to put it back in the toaster, he says: "This is your life. You must live it according to your own wishes.”
The walk to the train station is difficult at first, because when I run to keep up with his flight, he lands on the ground and walks next to me at a pace that means I risk missing my train.
"Why don't you perch on my shoulder?" I ask.
"Oh," he says and stops abruptly. "Don't you think it's too soon?"
"No, not at all," I say and smile. "In fact, I think I’d like it."
And after a moment’s hesitation, he flies up and I feel his gentleness as he attempts to balance on my shoulder without gripping my skin with his claws.
"It's fine," I say. "It doesn't hurt."
"Are you sure?" he asks and nudges my earlobe with his beak.
I laugh, throwing my hair back. The gesture relaxes him and he begins to caw in time with my laughter.
On the train we're silent again; he stands on the table and looks at me, absorbing my hair, my eyes, my nose, my skin, my ears: "Because I already know the inside of your mind," he says.
“Of course you do,” I say. And then: “It’s normally the other way around.”
“That’s absurd,” he says and caws so hard that I have to clamp his beak with my fingertips and remind him that we’re sitting in the quiet carriage.
At work my male colleagues grunt their good mornings, while pretending not to notice him. My female colleagues however, they jut out their hips and push out their chests, crowding around him. But he, he just flaps up through their midst, lands on my shoulder and says: “You!” to the women. “You must find your own dreams.”
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