Fanfare, fireworks, marching band…

The moment that some of you have been waiting for! Competition results!

Please note this is not an April fool. We had loads of really good entries, so it was a very difficult decision (and the editors didn’t really agree either). But in the end, here’s the table of winners:

FIRST PRIZE: Fiona Campbell

SECOND PRIZE: Oliver Barton

HONOURABLE MENTIONS: Cath Barton and Bryan Murphy

Congratulations! Fiona, please email us and let us know which bits of the prize you would like. And now, for all of your enjoyment…

Marching

by Fiona Campbell

The elephants came in two by two, hurrah, hurrah. He sings it to himself softly to try and magic away the sound of their fighting in the room next door. He jumps when something smashes against the thin wall and then listens carefully. Silence, no more screaming, no more crying. He knows better than to think this is a good thing.

He’s hot and the heating’s right up and he can’t reach the switch to turn it down even though he stands on tiptoes. Two by two, hurrah, hurrah. He walks over to the door, the other one, the one that leads into the hallway. The dirty green carpet scratches at the bottom of his feet. The door opens easy and he’s in the hall and the light bulb is so bright it burns his eyes and makes white yellow patterns that turn black and he can’t see right for a minute.

The elephants came in two by two, hurrah. hurrah. The front door is open, and the cool air kisses his face, coaxes him out into the night. Puddles sparkle with yellow street lights and the darkness isn’t really dark until he looks up and the sky looks back at him and he wonders where the blue went and then he looks down again and thinks he sees the sun shimmering and looks puzzled when he looks up and it’s gone again.

He starts marching and he’s looking for elephants to march with and it’s two o’clock on a Sunday morning but it feels like the hottest day ever and he’s sure he just saw an elephant slip around that corner so he keeps on marching. His head hurts a bit but the night air soothes it and the rain runs into his ears.

The thick shiny leaves of the jungle whoosh past him and he hears the elephants calling his name and he runs to catch up with them, bare feet splashing, too-small pyjamas sticking to his bones.

It’s Monday afternoon before his mum reports him missing but by then he’s gone and he’s out of the rain and he’s marching with the elephants.

The elephants came in two by two, hurrah, hurrah. He sings it to himself softly to try and magic away the sound of their fighting in the room next door. He jumps when something smashes against the thin wall and then listens carefully. Silence, no more screaming, no more crying. He knows better than to think this is a good thing.
He’s hot and the heating’s right up and he can’t reach the switch to turn it down even though he stands on tiptoes. Two by two, hurrah, hurrah. He walks over to the door, the other one, the one that leads into the hallway. The dirty green carpet scratches at the bottom of his feet. The door opens easy and he’s in the hall and the light bulb is so bright it burns his eyes and makes white yellow patterns that turn black and he can’t see right for a minute.
The elephants came in two by two, hurrah. hurrah. The front door is open, and the cool air kisses his face, coaxes him out into the night. Puddles sparkle with yellow street lights and the darkness isn’t really dark until he looks up and the sky looks back at him and he wonders where the blue went and then he looks down again and thinks he sees the sun shimmering and looks puzzled when he looks up and it’s gone again.
He starts marching and he’s looking for elephants to march with and it’s two o’clock on a Sunday morning but it feels like the hottest day ever and he’s sure he just saw an elephant slip around that corner so he keeps on marching. His head hurts a bit but the night air soothes it and the rain runs into his ears.
The thick shiny leaves of the jungle whoosh past him and he hears the elephants calling his name and he runs to catch up with them, bare feet splashing, too-small pyjamas sticking to his bones.

Its Monday afternoon before his mum reports him missing but by then he’s gone and he’s out of the rain and he’s marching with the elephants.The elephants came in two by two, hurrah, hurrah. He sings it to himself softly to try and magic away the sound of their fighting in the room next door. He jumps when something smashes against the thin wall and then listens carefully. Silence, no more screaming, no more crying. He knows better than to think this is a good thing.

He’s hot and the heating’s right up and he can’t reach the switch to turn it down even though he stands on tiptoes. Two by two, hurrah, hurrah. He walks over to the door, the other one, the one that leads into the hallway. The dirty green carpet scratches at the bottom of his feet. The door opens easy and he’s in the hall and the light bulb is so bright it burns his eyes and makes white yellow patterns that turn black and he can’t see right for a minute.

The elephants came in two by two, hurrah. hurrah. The front door is open, and the cool air kisses his face, coaxes him out into the night. Puddles sparkle with yellow street lights and the darkness isn’t really dark until he looks up and the sky looks back at him and he wonders where the blue went and then he looks down again and thinks he sees the sun shimmering and looks puzzled when he looks up and it’s gone again.

He starts marching and he’s looking for elephants to march with and it’s two o’clock on a Sunday morning but it feels like the hottest day ever and he’s sure he just saw an elephant slip around that corner so he keeps on marching. His head hurts a bit but the night air soothes it and the rain runs into his ears.

The thick shiny leaves of the jungle whoosh past him and he hears the elephants calling his name and he runs to catch up with them, bare feet splashing, too-small pyjamas sticking to his bones.

Its Monday afternoon before his mum reports him missing but by then he’s gone and he’s out of the rain and he’s marching with the elephants.

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  1. #1 by Cath Barton on April 1, 2011 - 8:27 am

    That’s a lovely story – brought a lump to my throat. A worthy winner Fiona – congratulations.

  2. #2 by John Ritchie on April 1, 2011 - 8:38 am

    Beautiful, sad, but beautiful.

    John

  3. #3 by Sandra Davies on April 1, 2011 - 10:47 am

    Such a lightly told but tragic tale – congratulations.

  4. #4 by Oliver Barton on April 2, 2011 - 8:10 am

    Very poignant. I love the way you tell so much about the family and their relationships without ever being explicit. Very clever writing!

  5. #5 by Sandra on April 3, 2011 - 6:52 am

    Excellent Fiona! Well done.

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