I had a dream where Mary came to me, all elegant leather and furs and she looked me dead in the eye and said There will be a morning your oxalis blooms and you notice the rain outside your window is heavy like thunder, heavy like guilt, like the silence after a shot is fired—- that’s when a person will come to you.
What else, she says, tucking a strand of hair behind her ear. There’s more, dream me thought. There’s more and there’s a person—- somehow, dream me knew it was pointless to ask.
Ah, Mary finally says, that person, you’re going to kill them. It will be all right. You were born so they could die without regrets. The more you live the more they will die.
I wouldn’t know, she says, all cool tones and an angry smear of red across her lips. My brother, he deals with that issue.
I just tell you when.
And that’s when I wake up.
Mary thought this would release the tension in her shoulders.
The scissors were heavy. They would be enough to distract her from the thoughts swimming in her head. Fitting into her hands perfectly, she takes to them like a fish to water. There were no mirrors around her. Nothing to go by.
This is freeing, she thought.
Her black tresses fall to the floor like rain. You’re beautiful, Mary. The most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen.
Yes, she thought, hands clenched tight around the metal.
I am a beauty and a terror.
She doesn’t stop to look. She’s just cutting her hair. She doesn’t need to see.
It’s the results that matter.