When Hector fell off the scaffolding, I was dreaming. I had worked my own shift and then a graveyard shift for a friend and I had fallen, exhausted, into a dead sleep. In my dream a man was falling from a very high place. He wasn’t falling fast, more in slow motion, a dreamy kind of fall. I could hear his heart beating, thump-thump, thump-thump, thump-thump. A bird flying overhead flew to him and whispered in his ear, Do not be afraid, God loves you. The bird stayed with him for a while, and then flew off. A few feet before hitting the ground, the man disappeared, poof, into thin air. The ringing of my phone woke me. It was Hector’s boss.
At the cemetery, a little gray bird landed on Hector’s casket while the priest was talking. Then he flew up to a tree and perched on a branch, looking at me with one eye. Before getting in the limousine, I turned and looked at the bird. Do not be afraid, he said, God loves you. I looked around to see if anyone else had heard him, but no one had. He was speaking to me only, the little bird.
Hector, I thought, is that you?
No, the bird answered, but Hector’s fine. He did not suffer. He misses you. Do you want to say anything to him?
Tell him I miss him very much.
Was that you in my dream?
No, that was you.
About Project 52/2015: I like to take pictures and I like to write fiction. This Blog will combine the two in what I am calling Project 52/2015, one of my images mated with a piece of very short fiction each week in 2015. Enjoy.