Chapter 2

Touching the Clouds

Soft oranges and pinks blanket the sky,
As the Rainbow Forest fills Puff’s eye
Like a mighty fortress stretching far away,
Ending beyond where he could not say.
The proud trees give a wonderful show,
Dressed in every color of the rainbow.

Purple ash, and birch as white as the moon,
Fiery red maple and oaks’ hint of maroon,
Blue spruce and green from balsam and pine
At the edge of the field, all straight in a line.
Puff follows closely the butterfly’s flight:
He begins running—his feet feel so light.

Half through the field something catches Puff’s eye,
So he stands in the grass (now grown quite high),
And watches a deer buck jump in the air,
Spinning half ‘round as if without a care.
The cat smiles—while danger quietly hides:
Moving ever closer as it slithers and slides.

Then like the deer Puff jumps high as he can,
Nearly waist high to a full-grown man,
As a snake with white, red and yellow rings
Uncoils itself as its body springs
Directly at the cat—no longer there,
But suspended for a moment in the air.

The snake crashes just a few feet away,
Wondering how it missed such easy prey.
As Puff lands he stares it straight in the face
While it shoots its tongue to begin the chase.
Puff sprints backward through the grassy land,
Like a sharp knife cutting very fine sand.

The snake is gaining and springs to the sky,
Aiming at Puff with one perfect try.
But an unexpected kick in the air
Pushes the snake far from here to there,
About as far as a man can throw a ball.
Where it landed, Puff could not tell at all.

Puff turns to see the deer standing behind
That helped him from a very close bind.
Puff says, “Thank you sir, and if I may say,
You are welcome to join me this fine day.”
The deer replies while strolling away,
“Never liked snakes much. Be careful, okay?”

Puff stands where he is, confused yet relieved,
Amazed by what the deer so easily achieved.
Then he follows the deer as fast as he can
But the grass is too high to permit that plan.
Puff has to jump just to see where to go,
Following his friend, to where—who could know?

Soon the deer enters the forest ahead
As Puff pauses to rest in the grassy bed,
Imagining balloons carrying him high
Till nearly touching the clouds in the sky.
From up there he could more easily see
Where in the forest the deer might be.