Tuesday, January 17, 2006

She dreamed a dream

Last night, there was a dragon at her window.

When she woke, fevered, at 3, she told me about the dinosaur. By morning, it'd morphed into a dragon — she often confuses the two — and, in so doing, become more fully realized.

It wanted to eat her, her fingers, but her blue teddybear protected her. It wanted to eat the bear too, but bear resisted. It tried to eat the whole house.

For months, if not longer, I've been asking her, some mornings, if she dreams. Sometimes she says yes and, when pressed, relates something that happened the day before, or else a generic anecdote of anyday. How do you explain "dream" to a toddler; how do you know when they know? (I rarely remember my own dreams — why would I expect more from a 3-year-old?)

This morning we checked for footprints outside her window, just in case. We do live in the city, after all — a city in which ghastly things have been known to happen.

But it was a dragon all right, real as any dream can be, to my relief striking not fear so much as awe.
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