From Margaret H. Brooks.

Could a cloud lie?

Great dollops of whipping cream clouds boiled up
from the south late this evening changing shapes
plump forms rolling over one another in play

If you look away, of course you miss it all
the sky is clear until another storybook page
slips into view.

A child preparing to bed down under the stars
could see a bedtime tale unfold in the sleepy silence,
fresh air gently stroking his soft hair
and the faint hum of cicadas singing his lullaby.

Now I have no child to keep me company,
to remind me that stories at bedtime are essential,
be they read from a book or from the skies.

Yet I can tell myself stories, partly made up
and partly real, and fall asleep believing in the
“lived happily ever after” because

a cloud could never lie.

© Margaret H. Brooks 2007. From Shatter of Weeds

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