Creative Non-fiction: Four Little Words

by Kayla Markham, Age 14, Australia

Artwork by Lucy Zhang


Creative Non-fiction: Four Little Words jaBlog!Only four words long, this statement is so small yet so significant. It changes the lives of people every day and brings them so much pride and joy. This statement means I can do so many things, even what some would call impossible.


I can hurt, or heal.

The man’s heart broke as he watched his daughter, once so full of light struggling, fighting the disease that lurked inside her. Her eyes were closed; he hadn’t seen them for days. All the while, she grew thinner and paler as death took hold. He held her limp hand and let his tears fall. She was cold, so cold. He knew she wouldn’t wake, but still the flicker of hope lay nestled in his chest, only hurting him more when he came back to reality.

I can make fear, or bravery.

He knew he needed to be brave, as if in some way that would help her heal; but he feared what was going to come. How would he survive when she was gone? He shivered, knowing her end was near. “Belle, come back to me Belle,” he choked. She lay still. He could hear her breathing, shallow and raspy. She was being so brave. Let me be brave too, he thought.

I can make excitement, or nervousness.

Just then a long beep cut through the atmosphere, her heart was failing. His stomach contracted. No not now, please not now. “Help, help!” he shouted to the doctors coming through the door. Immediately, they started hooking wires into his beautiful girl and injecting her with lots of different things. He had no idea what they were doing, so he could only watch as they poked holes into her and made her bleed. He wanted to tell them to stop, stop her pain, but he couldn’t because of the ridiculous hope burning away in his chest. He watched on as they shocked her, her small limbs flailing, but still her heart didn’t beat.

I can kill, or resurrect.

She was dead, he could see it. He couldn’t understand why they still worked, just breaking her all the more. His hope gone, he stumbled to the chair and sat back down. He was lost, so much so he barely noticed the alarm change and the line on the screen start to move. His hope came back in a painful flood as he watched them stop, and start hitting buttons on the screen. Another needle was injected into her arm and, at last, the man found his voice. “She’s alive. Stop. Stop hurting her,” he shouted.

“We’re trying to wake her up and break the effect of the drugs, to get her heart beating strongly,” the doctor replied in a short tone. The man couldn’t take it in; he’d resigned himself to the fact that he would never see her again. He went back over to hold his daughter’s hand. His heart took over as he waited the painful minutes. His hope was again beginning to diminish until, he looked up, and saw her eyes, watching and waiting.

I can create a magic of sorts that reaches out to people and enfolds them in creation and wonder. I can do all of this because of four little words:

“I am a writer.”


Kayla writes: “I love to read and write. My favourite things to write are short poems and short stories. I also like to write anything that challenges me creatively.”

Cathy Yan

About Cathy Yan

Cathy Yan is an eleventh grade student from Canada who enjoys reading, writing, and volunteering at the local community centre. In addition to being the Social Media Assistant at Laura Thomas Communication, she is also the vice-president of her school's newspaper club, and the Global Village and Adventures editor for Amazing Kids! Online Magazine. She was a finalist in the 2014 Junior Author's Short Story Contest, and in the Poetic Power Essay Contest for the Summer quarter of 2014.

3 comments on “Creative Non-fiction: Four Little Words

  1. Lennox

    This is really extraordinary

  2. Cindy G

    Oh wow. Oh. Wow. Amazing job.

  3. Brooke Hemingway

    I love this piece! It is so inspiring and beautiful. Thank you for making my day just a little brighter. Good writing!

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