A Bright Day

And one that is filled with purpose and longing. There is something about the freshness of the morning, a sky so blue the colour actually seems contrary to nature, that is strange to me. I keep looking out of the dusty windows of this old house, expecting the world suddenly to be transported into a different land.

Today I am writing to you, diary, because ‘history is about to me made’. That’s what father says. He told us that ‘this great nation will rise up and prove to the rest of the world what natural leaders we are’. I understand from what my father says that war is coming. My older brother Thomas and I will be expected to fight The Enemy (for that is what father calls them). Maybe that is why the day seems particularly foreign and strange to me today. My youngest brother James will have to stay at home while we ride gallantly off to battle, and he’s very cross about the whole thing. Father has told us about the noble sacrifice of war for as long as I can remember, but for some reason, there’s a low down feeling of cowardice in my stomach. I can’t tell Thomas about it. He’s been as brave as a lion since we were children. It would be shameful even to talk to mother about it- she gets so upset when father begins to talk about war.

I am beginning to feel cooped-up in this hateful old house. The walls are creaking with everyone’s secrets: my well-hidden fear, James’ stash of stolen bird’s eggs, Thomas’ love notes. I sit here and know the secrets of others while hiding my own. I can’t imagine what secrets my mother and father must have, but I can feel their unhappiness leaking through those same walls that so brazenly disguise everyone else’s. Sometimes in the night, I can hear my mother crying, but I don’t know why. Mostly I don’t think about it any more than I have to. Some secrets are kept for a reason.

I have one last secret to impart, that cannot leave this diary. I believe I am in love. I have met the most wonderful lady, a Miss Violet, who works as a governess. I felt at first that she must prefer Thomas to me. Everybody does- not just girls, but our teachers and Aunts and Uncles and even father. But she didn’t seem to look at him. She was looking at me.

If I must go off to war, maybe I’ll fight for her.


Charlie Fall


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