10/24/14
Terminus
By R.L. Black


Harry’s wife Helen dreamed often about trains. Big, loud trains.

He found her one morning at the kitchen table, flipping through her new dream dictionary.

“Says here that dreaming about trains symbolizes my life’s journey,” she said as he took a seat across from her, a cup of coffee in his hand.

Harry rubbed his tired eyes and yawned. He took a sip of the hot, black wake-me-up.

“Says my life is right on track,” she continued.

He took another sip, narrowed his eyes, and glared at her from across his cup.

“Well, this is interesting,” Helen said. “This says that Freud likened the train to the penis.”

Harry had heard enough. He pounded his fist on the table, upsetting the cup and spilling its contents. “Bullshit,” he shouted. “You wanna know why you’re dreaming about trains? I’ll tell you why you’re dreaming about trains. You’re dreaming about trains because your snoring sounds like a goddamn freight train. It shakes the whole fucking house. There’s your fucking dream interpretation.”

He ignored her stunned, pained expression and left for work.

That night, Harry lifted a pillow from his wife’s face and imagined that she had dreamt a final dream about a giant, fluffy cloud smothering a train, silencing its annoying, shrill whistle.

For the first time in years, he slept like a baby.


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I live in Tennessee and I write lots of flash fiction and short stories, usually with some kind of dark or strange theme.



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