By Manny Jasus

Everyday on the way to my son’s school, we see a smokestack in the distance. We look at it and joke it’s the factory where clouds are made (every city has their own). He must be getting older and wiser because now he promptly says, “Daddy, there’s no such thing as a Cloud Factory!” I disagree. Factories do make clouds, though not the ones he’s probably thinking of.

This is the place where we pour out the clouds.
Where foreign inspectors are never allowed.
Producing the things you demand you’re allowed,
So you can be happy, and stylish and proud.

Yes, this is the place where we pour out the clouds.
In blacks and in grays and in all shades of brown.
That hang over cities and float their way down,
Far from respectable people in towns.

We’ve hidden it nicely, our dirty extreme.
To look light and fluffy and made it to seem,
It belongs in the sky, but in truth it’s a lie,
Engineered by our factory, spewing out grime.

This is the place where we pour out the clouds.
Making the things that will long stay around,
Oh, and we’re also polluting the ground,
And the water, that too,
Wait … did I say that out loud?

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