In this bland consciousness-raiser, Asch (Hands Around Lincoln, p. 63, etc.) casts the relationship between a boy and nature as friendship. ""The Earth and I are friends. Sometimes we go for long walks together."" Each drop of rain, each fingernail on the boy's hand, each brick of his house is rendered in a ripple of rainbow hues, giving Asch's simple shapes and usually spacious compositions a crowded, overworked look. The ""friendship"" is portrayed largely in figurative, generalized, or symbolic ways. To ""tell her what's on my mind,"" the lad stands on a tortoise whose shell markings suggest a world map; later, coming upon a littered, polluted stream (""When she's sad, I'm sad""), he carries the trash away (to where?) and plants a flower. In the last scene, he hugs a tree. Worthy insight perhaps, but so painfully earnest that readers are unlikely to feel more than a superficial, temporary response.