At sunset, balloon man walks balloon dog through the subdivision of balloon homes. Balloon clouds turn rosy, as at the end of its balloon leash, balloon dog does its balloon business on the balloon lawn. All seems as it has been and will ever be, but in the fading light, something glints by the balloon curb: a tack, its point a ledge balloon man can't help peering over. He's never seen something so . . . well, he has no word for it, so he makes one: sharp. He balances that word on his balloon tongue as he lifts the thing, carries it home, balloon dog trotting along behind.
In the darkness of his balloon house, staring at that point, he feels the thinness of his skin, how the taut air inside him longs to get out. He brings it close, almost presses it to his balloon chest, but just then balloon dog whimpers, rubs its tender, knotted nose against his hand.