Cloud Factories


Several days ago, my younger sister and I were talking about the delightful way our grandchildren see the world around them and then say what they see. She told me about her three year-old granddaughter and how she tattles on herself by telling her Mom that she is going to be ‘red’ today. I told her about my then four year old granddaughter and the cloud factories, and the poem I had written about it.

A few days later, while doodling yet another image, I wasn’t particularly pleased at what was happening on the paper, but continued because it was there to do. As I was finishing the image, I flipped the sketchbook sideways to see if that might alter my negative response. What I found was a cloud factory. I love it when that happens.

My granddaughter is now twelve, perhaps going on 35.

Cloud Factories
(for Katie at age 4)

Air was bitter cold,
intense with sunlight on snow,
as we drove up Hwy 43.
You told me how important
it was that everyone should
look to see something pretty,
like clouds that were bunny
rabbits, chasing clowns
with baggy pants and funny
flapping shoes. Little girls
running after soft baby chicks,
with their long hair streaming
out behind them.

I looked to see black and white
smoke stacks chugging, while
you saw little girls chasing hugs
blown on the wind, created
by “cloud factories.”

Later, driving into the city,
I saw a billboard that declared,
“Depression is the major cause of suicide.”

Not today. Today, I’m learning
how to hug a little girl
with long dark curls
streaming out behind her.

Elizabeth Crawford  12/2001

This is the image I found inside my sketchbook when I flipped it on its side.

Cloud Factory  8/27/09

Cloud Factory 8/27/09

About 1sojournal

Loves words and language. Dances on paper to her own inner music. Loves to share and keeps several blogs to facilitate that. They can be found here:
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4 Responses to Cloud Factories

  1. 1sojournal says:

    Oh Kaitlynn,

    I am so glad you could come here to see all of it. Took a lot of years to put all the pieces together, but I love it too and all of it makes for one of my very special memories of you. Maybe others will come here and start looking for their own cloud factories and then your wish and mine will be fulfilled. Love you honey, miss you, and can’t wait to see you again,

    Grandma Elizabeth

    PS I really like the idea of a blanket of cloud factories, wonderful warm winter image.


  2. Kaitlynn says:

    That was amazing! I just might have to put that on a blanket. I don’t know any other way to tell how much I loved it but I think its lovely. U ACTUALLY GOT ME TO CRY!!!!!! Which is amazing. knowing that u were thinking of me. i CAN NOT BELIEVE that I said something so beautiful or how u made it sound even better. I love u and that poem and the picture makes me think about all the wonderful things in the world. If everyone knew about the “cloud factories” maybe everyone for at least a second will look back and love everybody. Even though its just for one second that we think about them, the cloud factories are still there. They always will be. So don’ worry because i’m still that same little girl but an older smarter version. Always thinking of you and the “cloud factories.”


  3. Pingback: Cloud Factories | 1sojournal

  4. annell4 says:

    I love it all!!!


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