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My name is Annabel. I can't bear to see what they are doing to my beloved bird, how can my father think of giving my bird to that scientist so he can do his oxygen experiment? Why my bird? Why not something else?
I can hear my bird screaming and crying for help. What should I do? What can I do?
That's it. There is no hope. I can't live without my bird. Why is my father trying to explain that everything is going to be fine? I can feel the breeze rushing to my hand. I can imagine my bird having an awful death, obviously no creature can live without oxygen. What am I to do? I want my bird, that's all, I don’t want anything else. My head feels heavy, it's like I'm going to faint. My heart feels like it's going to break into pieces. I hope she survives, I really do.
By Shammi, Cumberland School

I can feel my hand on my face, the tears running down. My Dad's arm on my shoulder, but I want to push away but I can't. I can hear my pet bird crying for help. I feel my sister’s warm neck on my other arm; she's upset, I can hear her asking Dad to stop and rescue the bird.
The scientist is going mad with his mouth running with ideas about the bird.
The rattle of the cage behind me, the light beaming on my face. I was afraid, afraid of my bird dying. It was a cold dark night, clouds covering the moon. It was a night of death.
The sound of the bird is starting to go down. I look up and it was just lying there. I’m screaming and crying. My sisters face is pouring with tears.
By Paula, Cumberland School

I can see clear images at first, but then I felt a cold hand grab me by the feathers and pick me up. I thought it was master, but as I turned I strained to see who it was. A freakishly old man with long grey hair, in rumpled clothes that hadn't been ironed. As I turned my head back to see where I was going, I felt a punchy feeling in my stomach. I found myself inside a glass bowl, everyone surrounding me. This weird man started counting down...three...two...one...I felt sucking like I was in a vacuum. Strangely enough it seemed as though the oxygen was weakening, my breathing became faster until I just could not breathe. Thoughts ran through my head, ‘what if they're going to kill me?' My vision became blurry, my mouth began to dry up like a sandy desert. I became light headed, trying to scream for help. They just starred. What was going on?
By Iris, Cumberland School

I was so in love...I looked deeply in to Thomas's eyes. I felt passion, intensity, insecutiry all at the same time.
I don't know how he did it, how he got me so besotted with him, whether it was his full lips or the way his eyes sparkled when he smiled, or most of all the way he looked at me. Those piercing eyes cut through me, almost like he could hear my every thought, feel what I felt. Oh those beautiful eyes. I couldn't help but gaze, but father's experiment distracted me.
Honestly, I could not care less for the useless bird, it had an atrocious smell, but when I looked at my siblings, the way they loved it so, Martha, Elisa, the hurt in both their eyes. I could not stand it!
The air was slowly being pumped out. I saw its wings slow, I heard it strain, but before they could kill it I flung out an arm and broke the glass bowl. Louis was just in time with the cage for it to fly in to. Martha and Elisa rejoiced.
By Stephanie, Cumberland School

Go on, hurry up, I thought to myself in anxiousness. As I stand there grasping my hand on the birds rope, I see the professor taking air out of the cockatoos lungs. Everyone was really nervous, you had Dad, who wanted my two sisters to learn about science, but my sisters who couldn't stop crying. You had the couple who couldn't take their eyes off each other, and everyone else was just tired and sleepy.
He was almost finished. I felt the professor was an inspiration to me. When I grow up, I'm going to become the greatest scientist in the whole world. As the midnight moon shined on the professor's face, I knew he had finished.
The professor put the air back in the cockatoo's bowl, but it was too late - the bird had died.
By Robert, St. George's RC School

It was a cold night, the full moon was out and the clouds were flying in the air like an eagle. I could see the big headed scientist doing an experiment on my poor pet bird. All I could hear was my bird tweeting for her life. I could feel my Dad hugging me, trying to make me feel better, but it was not working. I turned my head away because I did not want to see my pet struggle for dear life.
All I was thinking of was snatching the bird out of the glass bowl, so she could breathe. The scientist was taking all the sweet air away from my bird, I felt like I was going to vomit, my tummy felt so bad.
Then I heard my bird stop tweeting. I thought she had flown back into her cage, but as I looked up at the cage, she was not there. My heart started beating fast. I did not want to do it, but I looked at the glass bowl. The bird was lying there, with no movement at all…
By Danny, St. George's RC School

It's been twenty years, but I remember it like it was only yesterday...
Everyone gathered around the table, all feelings lost as we waited. Sir Charles Philip entered the room and began his experiment. The room was silent but I could hear the wind blowing with such anger outside. Anna couldn’t bear to watch, father assured us that everything was going to be fine, I had to be strong for her and for myself. Uncle looked down at the table, no feeling, no movement.
Marta and Johnny, looking into each other's eyes, hadn't a care in the world for our poor old bird. I felt tears running down my cheeks. A haunting image ran through my mind. I felt something cold sweep against my face. I prayed, but my prayer was unfulfilled. I want to be comforted.
By Rosa Maria, St. George’s RC School

I can hear her tapping on the glass. Tap, tap, tap. Every time. Slower than before. The sound on Uncle Henry pressing on the contraption that he made. I hear Addie-May's constant sobbing. I listen to the groans of Patrick as he struggles to hold up the bird cage. Giggles coming from cousin Sarah's direction, as Simon tries to whisper something in her ear. I keep watching the glass bowl. Cou Cou (that's what we call her) is losing her feather flapping furiously. Father has just leaned over me and said to not be so emotional, as it is only a bird.
I can no longer look at the disaster which is about to happen. Life for Cou Cou as we know it, is over. I shall never smile again. She is part of the family. Would you try to suffocate someone of your family, just for an idiotic experiment? Addie-May puts her arm round me but is confused whether to look away or keep watching. She keeps watching. Then everything speeds up. The pressure of the machine. The giggles from Sarah. The tapping of Cou Cou.
Silence. That's all I hear. My eye's are shut. I open them. I look across to the glass bowl. Cou Cou is there. She's not tapping. She's not fluttering. She's...dead. I run over to the glass bowl. She's not tapping. Not tapping. Not tapping.
By Ilhem, St. George's RC School


Image of quote from Sherry's story.Click here for Sherry's story.
Image of quote from Diane's story.Click here for Diane's story.
Image of student.This is the Student responses page.
Image of 'An Experiment on a Bird in an Air Pump' by Joseph Wright of Derby, 1768. Click here for About the Painting.
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More about Sherry Ashworth
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