Wind chimes filled the outdoors with music. Telephone wires whistled with each gust of wind. Leaves could not hold on to their branches but danced in the air before floating down to cover the backyard like a big, lumpy, calico quilt.
The wind was teasing everything. It lifted Allison’s hat off her head and pulled her ponytail out in front of her. It pushed at her one way, then shoved her another.
“Stop it!” Allison shouted at the wind. “You’re too rough!”
But the wind didn’t listen.
Allison bounced her ball, but the wind snatched it away. She tried to jump rope, but the wind tangled it under her feet.
“Wind,” shouted Allison, “you don’t play fair!”
Again and again the wind interfered. When Allison tried to roller-skate, the wind made her wobble. When she tried to pedal her bicycle, the wind wheeled her the wrong way.
Allison stopped and thought. “Wind,” she said, looking up into the sky, “I know something that we both can play.”
Allison went into her house and brought out her kite. As she let out some string, the wind pulled the kite little by little high into the sky. Up, up it went, higher than the houses. It kept going up, up until it seemed to be playing tag with the clouds and there was no more string left to unwind.
Allison tugged on the string. The wind pulled on the kite. Allison giggled. The wind whistled. All afternoon Allison and the wind played.
“Al—li—son,” called Grandmother from the porch.
“Wind, I have to go,” Allison said as she tugged harder on the end of the string.
The wind pulled back.
“I really have to go now.” This time she tugged with both hands.
The wind pulled back again, but more gently as it began to die down.
Little by little the kite floated down. Down, down, up, down, zigzagging below the clouds. Down, up, down below the houses. Down, carefully, below the trees. Whispering now, the wind set the kite at Allison’s feet, then brushed across her face like a feather.
“Oh, Allison,” called Grandmother once more. “Come over here and let me see those great big apples in your cheeks.”
Allison giggled. She knew that she didn’t have apples in her cheeks. She had just been kissed by the wind.