From Greg Kern

A Cloud’s Fourth of July – Part 1

The cloud, he woke at break of day, with sunlight in his eyes A perfect day for travelling across the Summer skies he donned his favorite suit of white, the seams all neatly sewed He checked the Weather Channel twice and then he hit the road

This was his favorite holiday, a warm July the Fourth he traveled southbound for awhile, then turned and headed North feeling like a child again, those days he could recall July the Fourths of long ago when he was very small

On a lake as smooth as glass he glanced at his reflection he saw that he was looking good…the image of perfection he knew that he should look his best, his picture might get taken He’d heard there was a SOCIETY FOR CLOUD APPRECIATION

He knew that clouds were Nature’s gift and he was truly blessed A sense of pride welled up in him and he puffed out his chest he tried to keep his head on straight, knowing he was so admired he had his place in history…countless artists he inspired

A long days journey lay ahead, two hundred miles or so he would have to take his time with traffic moving slow The air was thick with Cumuli…all had the same idea The freedom of the open sky was the perfect panacea

He set his speed on cruise control and settled back to think Stressing out about traffic jams could drive a cloud to drink he had learned how to relax…to just go with the flow he didn’t have to stop for gas…the wind would always blow

The scenery was beautiful when floating up so high Clear to the horizon he could see, where the Earth met sky The lakes, the trees, the golden fields, the rivers that did flow He hoped these things were all enjoyed by people down below

From time to time he changed his shape to please those down below he took the form of animals, he sure put on a show he was a dog, a cat, a bear, a fire-breathing dragon He was good, but humble, too…he wasn’t much for braggin’

The Summer always went so fast…he wished that it would stay he tried so hard to hang on tight but it would slip away quick as a flash it would be gone, a fading memory and so he vowed to live each day…advice for you and me

A Cloud’s Fourth of July – Part 2

There were clouds he’d known when young and never saw again did they ever think of him and good times way back when?
And where were they residing now? How had their lives turned out?
These were the things in quiet times he often thought about

He saw old friends along the way and he was quite surprised more time had passed than he had thought he came to realize they had all put years behind, for in the sunlight shining he noticed some had put on weight and some had silver linings

And then he saw some older still…the parents of his friends they were in their twilight years and closer to the end where he was now they once had been…where they were now he’d be his future flashed before his eyes, he saw his destiny

As the afternoon wore on his anticipation grew excitement not unlike a child’s, when everything is new the sun had slowly crossed the sky and it was sinking low below the crowds were gathering with children all in tow

The sun, the moon, the rain, the wind…all were nature’s wonders all of these combined to cast the spell that he was under And in the dark with awe he gazed…when stars would all appear How could they be so far away and yet still seem so near?

And when the sun had gone to bed and darkness settled in The time was quickly drawing near when fireworks could begin The fireflies had gathered, too, to celebrate this day And with their tiny flashing lights, put on their own display

He loved the colors that burst forth, all red, and blue, and white the little clouds they left behind that trailed into the night Reverberations jolted him…he heard the “oohs” and “ahs”
The fireworks were the perfect thing to chase away the blahs

All at once the end was near, the finale ripped the night A thunderous roar that shook the ground with blinding bursts of light A barrage of exploding missiles that assaulted eyes and ears Then just as quickly all was calm…and he was moved to tears

He didn’t know how many more displays he’d live to see he knew that nothing on the Earth went on eternally but this had been a special day, one that he’d remember a memory that he’d recall on nights in deep December

And someday in the future before it was too late He hoped to realize his goal and see all fifty states Every year he’d started out but never saw it through Another thing he dreamed about, but would never do

And now, the cloud, he closed his eyes, and drifted off to sleep Counting snow white Cumuli in the shapes of sheep dreaming of the day’s events…good times mixed with sorrow another day would take its place…at first light tomorrow

© Greg Kern, Olmsted Falls, Ohio, USA

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