The Half-Dream of John Knight’s Wife, by Pat Baker

Elizabeth Knight is between a dream and wakefulness. She is in John’s prison cell with him, his head lays on her lap. He looks up, amazed and gladdened. A tear falls from her eye to his cheek, and upon the tear’s curve are the faces of their dead children. They blur and rotate. These angel children seem calm, protective and orderly.

The tear rolls away but can be replayed. Everything feels better. Nothing has changed. These children were angelic in life; obedient to their parents. They would grieve to see their father in his bleak prison cell now. But what a comfort, to glimpse their faces. Elizabeth gazes with sleeping eyes. Her lips move over their names.

Pat Baker