Writing Out Of The HD Shadow: winning entries 2019

Thank you to everyone who entered this year’s Writing Out Of The HD Shadow competition. Here are this year’s winning entries.

Under 16’s: Writing About HD: The Light Beyond The Shadow

No Mercy by Georgie Garrett

I have no mercy. 
I am the fire that burns you from the inside. 
I am the ice that pierces your own heart. 
I am the shadow that is always with you, 
always waiting, poised to kill. 

I have no mercy. 
When you try to write, I’ll be there. 
When you try to walk, I’ll be there. 
When you try to end it all, I will let you… 
But only after I have had my say. 

I have no mercy. 
The small boy who feeds you after school, 
The girl who puts you to bed, 
The family that holds and cares for you… 
Will all, one day, be mine. 

I have no mercy. 
Only when you are weakened, 
When you cannot distinguish the hallucinations from reality, 
When your limbs will not hold still, 
When you do not recognise your loved ones 
And they do not recognise you, 
Only then will I leave you. 
And I will leave you with no mercy. 

Daddy? by Kenneth MacIver

‘Daddy, Mummy’s twitching’, 
‘Daddy, Mummy’s getting angry’, 
‘Daddy, Mummy’s drawing different’, 
‘Daddy, Mummy’s forgetting things’, 
‘Daddy, Mummy’s falling over’, 
‘Mummy needs to go to the Doctor’s’, Daddy said. 

 ‘Mummy’s sick’, Daddy said. 
‘Mummy’s got what Grandad had’, Daddy said. 
‘Daddy, will you get sick?’, 
‘No, I won’t’, Daddy said. 
‘Daddy, will I get sick?’, 
‘I don’t know’, Daddy said. 

‘Mummy can’t work anymore’, Daddy said. 
‘Mummy’s going to live in a different house’, Daddy said. 
‘Mummy needs help’, Daddy said. 
‘Mummy’s going to a place where they can help her’, said Daddy. 
‘You can go and see Mummy any time you want’, said Daddy. 

‘Mummy’s in a better place now’, cried Daddy. 

‘Grandad, Mummy’s twitching… 

Huntington’s Disease by Christopher Rae

My mind is like a race car, 
Twisting and turning. 
My memory is like a bus, 
People getting on and off all the time. 
My body is like the rain hitting the ground jumping around in all directions, 
Jumping around everywhere. 
But I am like a flickering light bulb, 
waiting to go out. 

Over 16s: Writing Out Of The HD Shadow

 Johnny by Andrew Phillips

Always he was up for a beer, no matter what time of year. Just a normal lad – whole life ahead of him. 

As I used to wait, his dad occasionally groaned and convulsed, unable to control his movements – his arms and legs kicking out. Johnny’s fate was never in doubt. 

One morning off to the seaside we did go; cooling our feet in the murky, brown sea – that was Barry. A lush day we spent there, whiffing the salty, sea air. 

Watching football once in a while, before God came to take him early; wearing a knowing smile… 

Dad by Sheila Scougall

Dad, the waitress has been three times now. We have to order. The soup came…. Oh no Dad, you can’t need to go to the loo already! Please, just leave his soup, he won’t be long…. Could we have some more napkins? Great….. Sorry can we have another knife?… Mum! Pat Dad on his back, I think he is choking. Are you OK? Good. Oops! You have spilt your water. Never mind we can mop it up with these extra napkins…. Yes thanks, we have all now finished; you can bring us our puddings….. Great! Can we have our bill? I’ll use my card. Dad put on your jacket. Yes I have your glasses…. 

“Look at that drunk man, he can hardly walk straight, and is with his family. How embarrassing.” 

“How dare you say that! He is not drunk. He has Huntington’s Disease. And he is MY DAD!” 


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