‘Why We Flee?’ By Alice Talbot, Age 14, Year 9, Thomas Clarkson Academy

There is gunfire and explosives falling. Two nations are fighting for their lives. They claim to be incomparable, but they all have the same goal: to survive. Everyone is attempting to stay alive. Everyone, including myself.

My heart is pounding as I escape for my life, numb and trembling. I didn’t possess anything. My house was damaged, and all of my valuables were taken from me. My family and friends are also fighting for their lives, but I’m not sure if they’re still alive. What if… What if they’re no longer alive? My entire existence crumbled in front of me, and there was nothing I could have done to stop it.

I run across farms and forests. I flee in terror for my life. Others sprint beside me, and we assist each other defend. If we stick together, a ray of hope will appear in the distant. We don’t know each other, but there is a lot of trust and respect between us. Whether we like it or not, we’re all in this together! Our legs are aching and burning. We were so close, but it feels like we’ve been racing for an eternity. But we will not give up!

We could hear the devastation of gunfire and the screams of injured soldiers in the distance. As I fight through the anguish, tears stream down my cheeks. I knew I couldn’t stop, yet every fibre of my being told me to. But I promised myself that I wouldn’t give up for nothing. I promised my mother that I would continue until I reached the border. She only wanted me to have a better life. She wanted me to have a better life, yet this battle was all I knew. Even if it meant we’d be apart for a little while.

Yes! The ocean shimmers with light. We were present! Joyful as chuckling filled the air. During this gloomy period of my life, it was the first time I felt genuine happiness. My entire body lit up with happiness. I could see the boat, so I only needed to get to the shore and hop aboard. I turned back and said my country farewell. My home will be missed. Goodbye, ferocious war. But most significantly, I said good-by to my mother. I hope my mother is safe and well. This is the beginning of a new, better, and safer chapter in my life.