I dreamed I was at my brother’s house, barely sleeping one morning when something came crashing through the window at the head of the bed. It was a young girl, maybe 7 or 8, in a homemade flying machine, something she had built herself. The invention had gotten away from her a bit, and she could not control it well. She flew around the room while I called to her to come down. I asked her to stop trying to fly and let the thing settle on the floor. It was like a bird that needed to be calm, to light somewhere. She let me pull the machine down to the floor, where it still fluttered and promised not to be still. She stepped down, and I folded the machine closed.

It turned out the girl knew my brother, and I told her we needed to go see him and tell him his window had been damaged. She was afraid he would be angry. I couldn’t stop marveling at her invented apparatus. How did a girl this age do something like this? No, I said, he won’t be angry; he’ll be amazed. I led her to the room where he was sitting at a desk. I unfolded the winged machine and said to him, look at this… isn’t she incredible?