The Lonely Creature

By Fintan Bowles

Loneliness is something we all fear,

We hate being without people,

and secretly want everyone to be near;

Our friends, our family, our steeple.

If we run too long without our batteries,

Then we power down, ourselves a dispeople.


We tend to think of loneliness as a mechanical fault on our behalf,

Whether or not it’s a decision we’ve made or a personality feature,

We always blame it, and feel it, hidden in a laugh,

But loneliness isn’t a malevolent creature.

Loneliness is kind,

Loneliness is a teacher.


When you’re alone, in your room, only a cloud hidden sky to view,

Loneliness sleeps by your bed side, curled up, a feathered snake,

You clamber into bed and it wraps around you,

Loneliness is a reminder, not a mistake,

A reminder of the fact you are loved, whether by others or yourself,

A boost on a journey to make.


You can spend hours weeping, or staring through glass,

Hoping for them to come through the door and hug your stand,

But they’re there, out in the world, your worries equal to their last.

When one isn’t there in flesh, they are there in hand,

When you need them most.

Loneliness gives to emotions what is not banned.


If we had no loneliness, we would have no push, no shove,

To be lonely is to feel. Animals avoid loneliness, as do we, in our animal nature,

I love being lonely, because I, a primate, loves being loved.

Thank you loneliness, you beautiful creature.

I will hold you close tonight, I always will,

Loneliness is something that makes you miss her.


25 Days Annual Leave – Marrakech (Part 2)

By Sarah Lawrence

This is Part 2 of Sarah’s journey – read Part 1 in our previous post.

Day 3: Introducing Jerry…

3am, I heard a rustling and thought nothing of it. 3:15am more rustling. 3:30am I looked round the room and found the source of the rustling. Our breakfast we had brought was left on the floor and beside the now open packet sat a little mouse. We dubbed him Jerry. Little rascal. For three hours, I watched the mouse run in and out of the gap in our tent. Once it was acceptable to get up, my sister tried for a couple of minutes of mouse-free sleep and I was appointed photographer of sunrise. This meant that I had to climb to the top of the sand dune, which in shoes and carrying a heavy camera is no easy feat. Upon making it to the top I saw a man trying to get everyone’s attention. He then informed us that we had climbed the wrong one and should climb the bigger one to the right of us. Nope. I took a few pictures of the desert and fell back down the dune and impatiently waited to clamber back on the grumpy camels.

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25 Days Annual Leave – Marrakech (Part 1)

By Sarah Lawrence

As we say goodbye to another year we begin to think about things we have to look forward to in 2018. If you are stuck for ideas here is a planned out six-day holiday for just over £600 including flights and riad (a traditional house built around a courtyard, used as a hotel).

Important: Marrakech is made up of, what I consider, two components: the old city and the new city. We stayed in the old city for that authentic experience. 

Day 1: Welcome to Marrakech

The flight was hectic; parents were yelling and children were hitting each other with anything they could reach. Thankfully we soon found ourselves in a private car with air conditioning, tinted windows and bottled water. Walking down the road to our riad, I found myself in the way of many motorcycles and cars. Beware of shop owners calling after you: they will try every language they know to get your attention and also, butchers have a much more open-door policy consisting of hanging carcasses dripping blood on the pavement. It was at that point my sister and I started a little game we like to call; ‘Not the Weirdest Thing I’ve Seen This Holiday’.

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Gardens and Whales

By Fintan Bowles

What is poetry if it comes down to gardens and Whales?

Is it the arrogant writer’s odyssey of noting storms and gales?

When pen touches paper, paper touches man,

With words of emotional depth and where empathy ran.


Poetry is the trickery of the man with the mind,

As the fool reads and believes he cannot write such art from behind,

Yet poetry is any man’s bite, even gardens and whales,

To put it into practice is the way we tell our tales.


What is with this man business? Can a woman not have this touch?

Why yes, gardens and whales are for everyone, so long as you know of such.

I believe that everyone has a story they can’t possibly tell,

But when they try poetry, their emotions draw great swell.


Gardens and whales? How arbitrary! Why this for a title?

Well when you conjure up emotions, a lure for them is vital.

The fisherman sings, when he raises sails,

For in his heart is a story, a poem of gardens and whales.


Best Decision I Ever Made? Staying at Essex

By John Stammers

In October 2014 I moved into my flat in Keynes Tower a naïve fresher. I had never cooked a meal, never done laundry, and I was cocky enough to think I didn’t have to worry too much about budgeting because I wasn’t much of a drinker. I was wrong.

For the first three weeks, I lived on Pot Noodles and Happy Days. I went home at weekends so my mum could do my washing. And I managed to waste more money than my flatmates despite spending my nights sober. I woke up each morning with my stomach screaming for real food, I was lonely, and I was losing my savings at a terrifying rate. As you can imagine, I was far from happy at Essex.


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Around Lenin’s Finger: Creel 3 Campus Launch

By Jonathan King

Wednesday 18 October 2017 saw the campus launch of Creel 3 at the Art Exchange (the public launch having taken place a few weeks previously on the 9th September 2017 at a packed Wivenhoe bookshop). Around fifteen of us made the journey on a misty and mystical evening, seated amongst the artefacts of the current exhibition Fallen, exploring the rise and fall of Vladimir Lenin around the quite magnificent central piece, a 4-metre-long model of Lenin’s finger from the vast 100-metre-high sculpture proposed for the Palace of the Soviets. It really has to be seen to be believed.

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Reflections on Welcome Week 2017

By Siril Grini

A treasure hunt for about 150 people, dead pigeons and over 200 brand new students… Welcome Week 2017 was eventful to say the least. Here are my reflections on Welcome, for the first time through a staff member’s eyes rather than a student’s.

For those of you who have not met me yet, I am the new Student Engagement Intern in the LiFTS Department. I am also a LiFTS alumna, as I graduated with my BA in English Literature this summer. I started in the beginning of September, and my first month in the department has been all about Welcome Week. More than a month of hard work from everyone in the department’s admin team culminated in our Departmental Induction Day on Tuesday 3 October.

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Welcome to LiFTS!


Hello and welcome to the Department of Literature, Film, and Theatre Studies! Whether you are a undergraduate or postgraduate student we hope you are looking forward to studying with us in LiFTS. Welcome Week is just around the corner and the Department and the University have arranged exciting events all week to help you settle in. Here’s what’s going on:

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