VALIDATE ME competition winner!

VALIDATE ME by Charly Cox was published last month and to mark the occasion, we launched a poetry competition judged by Charly.

We are thrilled to announce that the winning poem is The Unknown by Alex Thornber. 

‘Alex with The Unknown is winner for me. So honest and evocative – I’m a sucker for rhyme and I love that the pace keeps you spiralling, reading more, like racing thoughts but in the end it leads you to hope.’ Charly Cox

The Unknown

It’s scary.

I am however, always scared.
Scared of daemons stalking my home
of who is calling my phone
of dying alone
All of it, so dauntingly unknown.

So I am scared.

Knowing the just out of reach
could well be a sandy beach but,
what if it’s not?
What if it’s a long fall, the silence that envelops all
at the end?

So I am scared.

I am more scared of the shadows in my head
than any lurking beneath my bed.
Because they are the ones with power.
The power to send me
cowering away from anything,
anywhere
everyone.

So, I am scared.

But the truth is, I’ve already had more time
than all my adolescent lies of being fine would ever have predicted.
And I have to admit,
I’ve become addicted to being alive.

So, if I could reach back through time and find
that suburban kid, swigging bourbon
too scared to live,
too scared of making a mistake
with too many paths to take,
and all of them
uncertain

I’d say to him I know you’re scared,
you are underprepared, but as the unknown comes known
slowly you’ll grow.
And when the foggy future becomes a crystal present,
you’ll be glad of the gift.

The gift from our past self,
specially delivered through the war zone of mental health,
the gift of never giving up.

So, yeah, we are scared,

but we have the power to live,
to stare directly into the unknown,
arms wide
head held high
as if it’s the adventure of a lifetime.

Because, it is.

And if you survived long enough to become me,
then I owe it to us
to see who this me could be.

 

VALIDATE ME by Charly Cox is out now!

Related book

Other Articles

Writing Nightingale Point – Luan Goldie’s Story

Ahead of the paperback publication of Nightingale Point, Luan Goldie reflects on the inspiration behind her brilliant and moving novel and gives us an insight into her writing process.   ‘My husband is Dutch and we visit Holland quite regularly. One evening, driving back from a day out with friends he was… Read More

HQ Wellbeing Book Bundle Competition

January is a month all about reflection, resolutions and planning, so we’ve pulled together a bundle of thought-provoking HQ non-fiction titles focused on wellbeing and lifestyle choices. We’re offering you the chance to win this amazing bundle of HQ books, perfect for keeping to your new year’s resolutions and maybe… Read More

Two authors writing Together – The Secret Sister

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to write a book with someone else? Karen Clarke and Amanda Brittany tell their story below, sharing with us how The Secret Sister came to life!   Writing a book together turned out to be even more enjoyable than we imagined when… Read More