What Life Could Become

Eighth Grade First Place in Creative Writing

I stare out of the window

Looking at the world outside

That was once

According to my textbooks

A lush, unsoiled, emerald paradise.

That is now

A broken, filthy, toxic abyss

An example of how to ruin a perfect gift and turn it upside-down

An example of how to shatter the dreams,

The lives,

And homes of people.

My books say that photographs

First were in black and white

And then

Became filled with colour

The colour that was in people’s lives.

Well, I say that the Earth went the other way round –

First it was coloured

Now it is all in monochrome

Grey towers, black smoke,

Colourless lives.

We have to stay inside

With the support we need to live

Oxygen blowers, food tablets, air conditioners,

Exercise machines too, lest we forget to walk.

But as I look outside,

I see the people who are choking, spluttering,


I see the children crying and living

A cursed life, for no fault of theirs.

While I sit, happily inside.


When you had the chance to rewrite the future,

When you could have made things better,

Why didn’t you?

When you should have eliminated poverty,

When you should have turned to renewables

When you could have left the fossil fuels behind

And tried to use and save at the same time,

Why didn’t you?

Why did you have to ruin our lives

While happily living your own?


Just why?!

You once said, “A clean today makes a happy tomorrow.”

But did you ever realise that

Your today was definitely not clean,

And your tomorrow – our today –

Is definitely not happy.