The four walls were her whole world. Nothing went beyond them, not even a solitary window to reassure her there was an outside. Their dark and uneven surfaces were so familiar, they seemed friends and relatives instead of dulling brick crevices. But these walls, she knew, were her prison. Not even in her dreams could she escape their imprisonment. Except for one. In this dream, she stands before a sagging structure of peeling yellow paint. Wild flowers in their varying colours are clustered all around her. There’s blue, white, reds and yellows. So many colours! There’s also a potent scent of their nectar buds that pollutes the air with mingled fragrances. No sweeter perfume could possibly exist. She smiles in her sleep. The most significant image however is the figure that stands before her. The person’s back is turned towards her and their imagery is too slurred really to distinguish any features. Always precisely at the same moment, the figure turns slowly to face her. The voice that ensues is warm with affection.
‘Finally, we’re home’.
She’d recognise that voice anywhere. And just as the overwhelming happiness begins to swamp her, the images fade into thinning fog, until finally, emptiness remains. Her temporary paradise now gone, she wakes with a strangled sob clogging her throat. Just as immediately, she forgets about her short-lived euphoria as the memory quickly disappears into the depths of her subconscious. Once she awakens, reality beckons. She knows no cosy structure painted in colours that match the sunlight. She doesn’t know the drugging scent of wild flowers. Colours are so few. And most importantly, there is no beloved figure welcoming her home.