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Year 7 Creative Writing

Our Year 7 students have been diving deep into creative writing, imagining life for First Nations people in Australia in 2053. The initial part of their assessment involved creating a 600-word story, weaving in themes of identity, tradition, and resilience. The second component of their assessment task was to create a reflective piece of 200 words to reveal the thought process behind their creative choices and how they connected their narratives to our year-long studies.

Read some of the captivating stories created by our talented students below:

Broken Pieces
Luca F

I woke as the fast-moving machine hit a bump. I was thrown against a hard metal wall.

鈥淲here was I?鈥 I thought, and then I saw a Balanda in front of me.

I screamed, 鈥淲here am I? Who are you? I want to get out!鈥

He did not understand.

I clenched my fist and slammed it against the wall. It throbbed from the pain, and the man yelled something in his strange language. The machine kept moving. It was going very fast. I felt like vomiting, but I held it in.

We arrived at a large clearing which somehow reminded me of home; however, this one was different. There was a long wall made from Moich wood surrounding a large hut, much taller than the ones we have at home. The machine went through a gap in the long wall and stopped right near the building. The Balanda clenched my arm like a snake gripping a baby possum before it dies and dragged me into the hut. I tried to hit him in the chest, but he was too strong, and all I could manage was a scratch.

He brought me inside, made me take off my clothes and step into a giant bowl filled with a white liquid that had a very strange smell. As I went in, I felt a stinging sensation all over my body. I jumped out, looked around the room, and my eye caught a shiny object 鈥 a round oval that had my reflection on it just like a creek in the moonlight. I grabbed a stick with thin spikes on it and threw it at the oval, which smashed into many pieces. The angry Balanda rushed in, grabbed me strongly, and threw me into a room filled with young boys.

They all stared at me. Finally, to break the silence, the biggest boy spoke to me in my language.

鈥淲ho are you? What is your name?鈥

He must be almost grown up, I thought to myself. I said, 鈥淢y name is Bindi.鈥

鈥淲hy am I here? Where am I?鈥 I asked. 鈥淲hen can I go home?鈥

A younger boy with black hair spoke to me.

鈥淵ou cannot leave. You will never escape. They will never let you leave.鈥

Tears crept across my face like a waterfall gushing along a cliff. I fell to my knees, crying, knowing my life would never be the same again.

It was a new day. I changed into some strange clothes and was fed some odd-tasting food with the other boys. We were then led by a man dressed in black with white at his throat to a small room with lots of little tables. The biggest boy translated his words for me; it seemed like he had been here for a while. The man said that I was welcome in this place, and they would not hurt me, that he would fix me and make my life better. I did not believe him. He wrote some odd characters on the black section of the wall and asked us to read them out. I had no idea what they were. When it came to my turn, I said nothing.

Nine months had passed since my arrival at The Church of New England Boys Home. After some time, I got used to the mission. I made friends who seemed like brothers to me. I could even speak some of the Balanda language. Everything was on its way to improving. As I played in the courtyard, I heard one of the Balanda yell my name:

鈥淏indi, come over here. I have some important news for you.鈥

So, I walked to him. He spoke again.

The other boys had warned me that this was the only way to leave the mission. I would be adopted into a new family with white parents. The Balanda kept talking about how lucky I was. When he finished, I walked sombrely to my bedroom, sat on my bed, and started to cry. I didn鈥檛 want to go with a new family. I didn鈥檛 want to leave. Tears flowed down my cheeks. My time was up at the mission, and I feared what came next. The tears kept raining down.

4 days later

I stood at the front of the building with my few belongings in my hands. The priest stood next to me. A black car came through the driveway and stopped right in front of us. As was expected of me, I got in, opening the next chapter of my life.

Reflection:

The Stolen Generation is a period that caused grief and suffering for Aboriginal people. It affected over 100,000 Aboriginal people across the country. I have created my story through the perspective of Bindi, a young Aboriginal boy who finds himself taken to a mission in Carlington, New South Wales. He is forced to go through many hardships during his time, including being forced to learn English while being prohibited from speaking his own language and being bathed in bleach. One of the most malevolent parts of this period occurred when an Aboriginal child would be removed from the mission and placed with a family of white people, just like Bindi. I have written my story to educate people on the horrors of the Stolen Generation and the impact it had on Aboriginal children. My story is meant for an audience who are interested in Australian history, and due to the age of Bindi, it may appeal to young people. The Stolen Generation was a very traumatic experience for all Aboriginal people involved. These effects are still reverberating through Aboriginal communities today. It has caused many Aboriginal people to lose their land, their language, and their culture. The effects have spanned across several generations and is an event that should never be forgotten.

Stolen Away
Aditya M

It鈥檚 another day at Stapleton House. Another meaningless day of Mrs. Connor鈥檚 dreadful 鈥渓essons鈥 and the constant fear of being struck by her belt. The invaders say that all this torture and cruelty is for our own good, for the good of the 鈥渃olony鈥. All I see are walls that feel like they鈥檙e closing in and faces that carry no warmth. Today, during our class, they showed us images of grand mansions with chimneys spewing smoke, calling them 鈥渉omes鈥. The sentence made me chuckle an empty, bitter laugh that echoed throughout the silent classroom, earning me a sour glare from Mrs. Connor. Home, for me, doesn鈥檛 mean big houses or fancy staircases. Home is the sweet memory of chasing wild goannas with my brother, Jarrah, their long tongues sticking out in a weak attempt at defense. It鈥檚 the nostalgic smell of roasting kangaroo over our pit-fire, the stories of our people flying along with the flames. It鈥檚 the feel of Bunurong land beneath my feet, the stars glimmering along the dark clear sky like a spilled handful of diamonds.

They took it all, even Jarrah at the tender age of 5. I saw the scared little boy inside of him that day, the same scared little boy that lives in me. When I have trouble sleeping, I hear his plea in the wind, a plea I can鈥檛 answer, pushing me to somehow get out of this wicked place.

Tonight, though, the night feels different. I feel as if my ancestors鈥 spirits are weighing heavily against me, compelling me to take action. The moon hangs heavy in the sky, an illuminated pearl against the universal black void. It reminds me of a story that lingers on the tip of my tongue, something about a clever woman who followed the moonlight home in a time of trouble. A fire burns in my heart, telling me to do something now before it鈥檚 too late. I know I need to do something, but what that 鈥渟omething鈥 is escapes my consciousness. Then, like a spark igniting in a lightbulb, I remember noticing a loose board by the back gate around the first week when the men dragged me to the camp. I had eyed it for days when I first arrived, somehow letting this vital piece of information slip my mind, perhaps due to the monotonous life I鈥檝e been living for 7 years since they took me, or maybe due to the mental torture. Either way, all I know is that I have to get out of this place.

Tonight, the moon is my accomplice, casting long shadows that swallow my whole body as I swiftly slip through the narrow gap. My heart thumps a frantic rhythm against my chest, each beat a call for escape. My heart skips a beat, and I let out a quiet whimper as I hear something behind me. If I get caught trying to escape, I would be taken to the prison, just like the other girl who tried to accomplish what I鈥檓 doing. I turn around and realize it鈥檚 just a Kookaburra. The bush plays a symphony of unfamiliar sounds. The insects chirp a chorus, the leaves rustle secrets in the cool breeze. Fear coils up in my stomach, like a serpent tightening its grip on its prey. The memory of Mum鈥檚 face, etched with worry and love, urges me on.

Days blur into one another. I scavenge for food鈥攂erries that stain my hands purple, grubs and insects that wriggle around in my stomach, disturbing and reminding me that they have a life of their own. Sleep arrives in stolen moments, under the watchful gaze of a million stars. Every rustle, every snap of a twig sends a jolt of fear through me. But I keep going, following the moon鈥檚 gentle guidance and the whispers of the land that seem to echo in my ears. The voices of the land and my ancestors comfort me, like my Mother comforted me.

One morning, the aroma of woodsmoke tinges the air. My stomach rumbles in protest, another reminder of my constant hunger. Following the delicious scent, I push through a group of bushes and find a gathering of people. Their skin the color of the earth. The group is gathered around a large campfire, their voices mingling in a combination of laughter and chatter. A woman with eyes like dark pools of water looks up, her gaze landing straight on me. 鈥淜irra,鈥 she whispers, her voice trembling. The sound pierces the dam holding back all my emotions. I let out a sigh, and a waterfall of tears escapes my eyes as I run towards the woman I haven鈥檛 seen in so many years. 鈥淢y boy,鈥 she says, 鈥淵ou鈥檙e home.鈥 Finally, all the years spent at the mission feel rewarded, and all the lonely hours crying alone in my room seem to vanish from my memory.

Reflection

This story is intended for kids and young adults, educators and teachers, and anyone interested in the struggles of Indigenous Aboriginals. The vivid descriptions make the story suitable for readers who like historical fiction. The primary message found in the story represents cultural identity. The story shows, despite severe oppression, the unbreakable connection to land, family, and culture that allowed the protagonist, Kirra, to persevere in his struggles. There are many racial problems that Indigenous Australians faced and continue to face in Australia, some of which include:

  • Forced assimilation into non-Aboriginal families
  • Bleaching of skin and other inhumane forms of stripping away their identity
  • Harsh punishments for speaking their native tongue.

The protagonist in the story represents the thousands of kids stolen away from their families during 1910-1970. However, in real life, countless of these kids never found and reunited with their families, but in this story, Kirra manages to escape and reunite with his family. This story takes place somewhere in Bunurong Country (southeast Melbourne) as mentioned in the story 鈥淚t鈥檚 the feel of the Bunurong cool land beneath my feet, the stars glimmering along the dark clear sky like a spilled handful of diamonds.鈥 The story鈥檚 plot is quite simple but includes many Aboriginal influences. The story is one where Kirra gets taken away from his family and spends 7 years separated but eventually escapes and finds his mother.