When I was a boy Dad told me that clouds came from smokestacks. That’s why it always rained in South Newburg. I thought, why not? The factories made all sorts of things. Those smokestacks had to do something, not just stand there with their noses in the sky. So whenever we drove downtown I watched the smokestacks make clouds and waited all day for it to rain. It didn’t always rain, even when I saw the blackest clouds coming out of those smokestacks. They just hovered over us for a while then drifted away. Maybe they felt sorry for raining on us so much. Or maybe they got tired of making clouds the older they got. After the factories stopped making things there were not as many clouds in the sky. But it still rained a lot. And darkness hung over us even on sunny days.

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