Puff … puff … puff …
Hey, everybody, look at me!
No, don't look around you—look up! Up here! It's me, the cloud factory!
Watch me work all day and all night. I'm hundreds of feet high. I'm so tall, I can almost touch the sky!
I love what I do. Every day, I give something to my friend Sky. I'm a cloud factory!
Puff! Here's another one, Sky! Puff! Puff!
I make all kinds of clouds—in all kinds of colors! Sometimes, I make white ones. Sometimes, they're gray. Sometimes, they're as brown as the grass or the trees. And sometimes, they're as green as the river.
And sometimes, they're as black as the night!
In the morning, little men go into a little house that sits under me, way below.
Hello, dear little men!
Soon, my tummy starts to feel full. And when I feel like I can't hold any more, out pop the wonderful clouds! Pop! Pop! Pop!
Sometimes, they come out in long, thin streaks. Phwissss…ssssss…ssssssss…
Or sometimes, they're not little clouds at all, but one looooooooooooong cloud that fills up the entire Sky! Chuggachuggachuggachuggachuggachuggachugga…
When Sun sinks away, going to the other side of the world to meet his other cloud-factory friends, the little men come out of the little house.
Goodbye, dear little men!
But I'm not lonely for long, because very soon, different little men come in to take their place.
Hello, new little men!
There they stay all night, and everything starts all over again. And I get to greet my other friends, the Stars, with my cloudy hellos!
Gosh! Did you see that cloud? That one came out alllll orange!
Once in a while, other clouds visit me. I send them little yellow clouds that frolic and play with the visitor clouds. Then, the visitor clouds start to rain. And you know what? Some days, the raindrops come out yellow—the same color as my clouds!
Thank you, visitor clouds!
I have other friends, too. Like the little birds. I love to watch them swoop and soar. They are so beautiful and graceful, and they bring me great joy. I'm so full of joy! I can barely hold it in! So I give them something beautiful back. Just as they approach, I pop out a great big pink cloud!
And when the birds fly straight into the cloud, they do a "rain dance" down… down… down… to the ground. Like a hundred little feathered raindrops!
Come back soon, birds!
One day, after the little men left the little house that sits under me, some other little men came and nailed boards to its windows and doors.
For a long, long time, I couldn't make any clouds. It made me very, very sad. My friends Sky and Sun tried their best to cheer me up, shining brighter and bluer and clearer than they ever had before, and I loved them more than ever before, and I wished I could thank them by giving them a nice yellow cloud. But, try as I might, I couldn't make one.
But then, one day, some little men came by and took the boards off the doors and windows of the little house.
How exciting! What was happening?
The next day, more little men came. A short while later, I felt a rumbling feeling deep down in my tummy.
Was it … ? Could it be … ?
Out popped a great big cloud even yellower than the lake!
And to this very day, I still make clouds.
And I'm never, ever lonely.