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Poetry 2023

Some written pieces deal with themes around horror and other topics that readers may find challenging.

Writer’s Block by Anastatia Lucking - Writtle University College

Creative writing! Erm I thought

Should it be long, or should it be short?

Then I recalled the golden rule,

500 words max – I’m not such a fool.


I could write a song which people would play

Then I’d be famous, if just for one day

But then again I could be wrong,

And be known for writing a terrible song.


Oh well, doesn’t everyone love a fairy tale

With a princess and maidens – how could it fail? 

But do people still believe in happy ever after,

Or would it be greeted with ridicule and laughter?


So why not be modern – they call it a blog

All you need to do is write about your dog.

But just one small problem as I realised that,

I don’t have a dog but I do have a cat.


Aha I know, I could write a cool poem

Those people who scoffed – I’d really show’em.

My work would be feted and read out loud

Wordsworth and Keats would be so proud.


Romantic or funny, or clever such choice

My inner Percy Shelley would be given a voice.

But just as I started to pen the first line,

Alas it’s too late; I’ve run out of time…

Welcome to the New Age by Thomas Brown - Warrington & Vale Royal College

Welcome to the new age, where we're all trapped in a cage

Technology's the queen bee, and we're her mindless little slaves

We're feeding on the internet, like it's some kind of drug

It's slowly killing us, but we can't get enough


Oh lord, you're a dangerous game

You're seducing us with your power and fame

But we won't bow down, we wont rise up high

Government controlling our lives till the day that we die.


They call us lazy and entitled

But it's your policies that are suicidal

We need healthcare, education, and more

Not just a government that just wants to score.


They are making cuts to save some money

But that means people are going hungry

Inequality and poverty on the rise

We need solutions, not more lies.


Social media's a killer, and the news is fake

We've lost our freedom of speech, it's like a bad mistake

We're being controlled by those in power, their claws deep within our flesh

Their games are endless, and they never give us rest.


you sit up high with your wealth and trust

The working class are struggling to survive

It's time for change or we won't thrive.


Wake up from your slumber, see the world for what it is

A place of greed and corruption, where our souls are dismissed

We need to break free from their control

Or they'll burn us of our heart and soul.


The dangers of modern society are clear to see

MP's voting for pay raises every year unanimously.


We need walk away from their twisted games

And start living high and free from there restraints.


We demand action and accountability

And if you won't provide it then we'll get rowdy

Our anger will fuel change in this paradigm

Let's come together and make our voices climb.

Fridge Magnets by Shalia Ali - Burnley College

You come from a home

Where your mother marries a new man

Not knowing who to call your father

As you are stuck in between

The crumpled bricks of your mother


Till you wonder around the library

To waste time during lunch break

All because you don't have friends

Leaving behind strangers

You never knew in the first place


Home became a temporary one star hotel

Until you said what is described to be a shed

And you drag yourself through giggles

Forgetting the hardship you face

When you drift into realisation

Falling for the numb distaste


And when she was pregnant with twins

One is lost and one is won

Waiting for her delivery

For once she reaches her due date

The only source of purity in your life

Her breath is taken away


All that is left

Is the tears of your mother

And the faces of your new fathers

With the footprints of your baby sister

Pinned on the fridge with some magnets

Repelling with every small argument


Because you were only a little girl

Who couldn't stand in front of a fridge

Or even open it to see what was inside

Until you shifted the magnets around

To create a happy sad smile :) :(

Waiting by Lydia Douglas Martlew - Writtle University College

Georgie said it’s too late to stay up

But I think not

When I know there’s a killer on the loose

My brain tends to keep working

And my eyes alert and ready

For a moving figure

And a glint of a sharp knife


The house is quiet

No footsteps are heard

No voices are speaking

Just me in my old bed

Waiting for the hours to tick by


My bird clock chimed 12 o clock

Tomorrow had now come turning into today

My tongue clicked to the beat of the clock

My head resting on my knees


Mummy said I would be safe here at my new home

That no one would be able to find me

But mummy’s wrong

Mummy had lied


My night gown had fallen around me in a neat circle

It’s sliver patterns of the moon made my eyes admire the sparkle

My feet were hidden in my duvet

I felt the silk sheets melt into the gaps of my toes

I smiled at the satisfaction


I yawned now stretching

My eyes started to betray me

As they fell shut

I had then fell sound asleep

But what I didn’t hear

Was the creak of my door

And the sound of footsteps coming nearer

And nearer

Ending up at the foot of my bed

With a figure standing there

Its face hidden in the dark

Like a silhouette in the blackness

But a silhouette.....ready to take a life

And make it its own.

Rising out of love by Nicola Lovegrove - Writtle University College

You got me when I was down,

Played with my head,

Made me insecure and settle for less,

Made your selfishness seem loveable,

And the pain you caused, inevitable,

Every time you made my eye go black,

Well, it was my fault,

So grateful you took me back,

You made me see my reflection was a mess,

But you stood by me while my friends contacted me less and less,

Then after a while I saw your reflection too,

For what it really was,

Not the perfection I initially saw in you,

Your cold words stopped being surprising,

And I knew it was time for me to start fighting,

Not for you to see who I was or could be,

But for me to see what I'm worth and for love I deserve,

I may not be the strongest and I am definitely not perfect,

But I'm strong enough to leave you,

And know I'm worth it,

It took me too long to start realising,

I don't need you,

And I am rising and rising,

Out of love with you.

Orange in the kitchen by Demi-Marie Chandler - USP College

I stood in the kitchen this morning

window open,

the summer breeze danced through the house

and I peeled an orange.

It reminded me of you,

no two halves of an orange are ever the same

but on this very morning

this was not true.

The veins of white intertwined the same patterns

the shades of orange uncanny,

and all I could think of is how you are my soulmate

and I want to give you the other half of my orange.

Manchester United by Anonymous

Our colour is red

And the shirt shines brighter,

I see my club on the up

And all to thank for the new manager.


Erik Ten Hag is this man’s name

And he’s brought teamwork to this team's game,

From old De Gea on posts,

Up to the defenders who easily coast

The ball to the play of the tic-tac

colossus combo of Christian, Casimiro and ‘Cott Mctominay

Who make up the Manchester midfield pack.


And last but never least,

The up-front attack always unsettling the peace.

On the right there is Fernandes on the flank,

And off to the left,

With a certain Jadon Sancho ready to Spank.

With the centrepiece of our rival’s goal,

Marcus Rashford will always provide a bolt to the ball

And put it through the opposition’s net

Farmers mind by Anonymous

Motorbikes – speed

-being on the brink of death

Beer – to forget what you done that day

Cars – speed

-Agri spec

Tractors – speed


-Flashing becomes

No sleep – drinking


Am I normal? by Anonymous

A simple person,

That’s what I dream to be.

Being normal,

Being treated the same.


The smallest changes make me fall apart,

I struggle to move on and get attached too easily.

I want to change,

But something always stops me,

I feel like a puppet

Being controlled by a master who lives within my head.


My brain is a marionette,

My veins are his strings,

And my body belongs to him to mistreat and destroy.


Many things in life are unexplainable,

I feel as if my life is unexplainable,

Sometimes I don’t feel human,

Sometimes it’s hard to describe how I feel.


Whenever I feel like everyone else,

Someone always has to remind me that

I am not normal

I will never be normal,


Whether it’s a person reminding me,

Or the voice in my head,

There will always be something there to remind me that,

A simple person,

I won’t be,

Being treated the same,

Will never happen.

Orange orchards by Lilia Walton - Bishop Burton College

This love does not smell like orange orchards.

It does not feel like morning sun through shutter blinds,

Or baby blue sheets stretched to fit a mattress far too big.


It smells like decaying animal, it smells like wind,

Holding someone when you need to be held much, much more.

This love makes me feel replaceable,

Therefore I have not yet been made infinite.


This love is not what it could be.


I want love like sweet peaches, leaving a tang in the back of my throat.

I want love that leaves hope, not something leaving with the weight of a heavy coat.

Someone that sees me ways I do not,

Because I am in fact worth quite a lot.


This love is not the love I want.

Bait by Zaka Ur Rehman Mahir - The Trafford College Group

Turns of times, burns of eyes

Eyes that haven't slept

For tens of years wept in fears

But I think there's yet some left


I sin for you like I've never sinned before

Oh God, is it really that bad

Opening for you some very strange doors

Am I growing old or just being sad


Mercy, some mercy for these eyes

Was my demise your only rise?

Ah did I perish and you lived inside?

My eyes have seen your fake pride


And then I'll smile, you'll frown

I lived for love I'll die for hate

Darling I'm hunting you down

And these words are just my bait

Thorn ancast to the fake Wolf by Tommy Little - The Trafford College Group

The title translates to ‘Thank you to the fake wolf’

Thorn ancast to the fake wolf, you inspire me to write.
How I hate the way you pretend,
Invading my mind day and through the night,
Always reliving about those days of memories that are negatively haunted.

Let me compare you to me?
You are trapped in your prison of lies,

I am not.

My personality is free,

Yours is in a closet with the doors locked by your own shame knot.

You are a wolf on the outside but when we peel you down to the very centre of YOU; I can see all the animals that are prey. Underneath all that evil there is a fragile and scared little boy who can’t go into the light, perhaps that’s unloving parents that may be created if the true YOU comes into the light. But instead, you shove that scared and lonely little boy in the dark to protect him.

How I have learnt to hate you? Let me count the ways.
I am beginning to love me again, while you are always lying who you are.
Is this because you are constantly being judged? And jealous because I am not? My hate for you is the love for me.

Now I must leave with an epic heart, before your words and wish to come true... Remember my rough words whilst we're apart.

A study of sin - the shadow within by Damien Harris - Chesterfield College

Greed, the gnawing hunger for more,
It seeps and creeps into the core,
Obsession deepens, an endless chase,
With each gain, an empty space.

Wrath, its fire burns within,
Fury, its vengeance feels like sin,
A spark that grows into a blaze,
Unquenchable until it lays waste.

Sloth, a languid siren's song,
Beckons one to rest for too long,
Days drift by in a daze,
Apathy leading one far astray.

Envy, the green-eyed monster,
It steals away inner composure,
A joy in others breeds malcontent,
Identifying one's worth with another's ascent.

Pride, bloated with boasting,
A grandeur grandiose imposing,
Blind to faults but keen on praise,
A fragile ego easily fazed.

Lust, the wild, untamed beast,
A hunger that's almost never eased,
The overwhelming need to consume,
A desire that can lead to one's doom.

Gluttony, the insatiable feast,
Overindulgence never cease,
A hunger that's always unfulfilled,
A stomach very easily filled.

The Seven deadly sins, they all connect,
In ways that we tend to neglect,
Each a deviation of the human heart,
All to guard against if one is smart.

For while we are all capable of good,
The darkness inside us in its own way, should,
Remind us of our own, all too human ways,
We must guard against each and every day.

I give you a cigarette by Alessia Firica - Halesowen College

Not a red rose or a satin heart.

 I give you a cigarette.

The smell will cling to you,

Your clothes, your lips, your hair.

It’ll taunt you and leave you in despair.

Anything to erase the smell.

Anything to erase the mistakes you made.

Anything to erase the memory of you.


I give you a cigarette.

It’ll feel sublime.

It’ll feel comforting.

It’ll feel exciting.

What you hoped will be eternity will be just a second.

But it’ll be enough.

Enough to make you want more.

Enough to leave you feeling sore.

But it’ll be enough.


When the cigarette burns to its filter you will want more.

You will cling on to that last drag hoping it’ll never end.

Even though there’s nothing there,

You won’t care.

It’ll deceive you.

Play tricks on you.

Giving you hope that maybe there’s more.

But there isn’t.

And there’ll never be.


You will want to smoke more.

You’ll light another.

Maybe this one may feel better,

Maybe if I take it slow, it’ll last longer.


You will want to try again.

One more love.

Maybe this one will love me better.

Maybe this one may last longer.


After many more, they’ll make you think.

Why did it end?

What did I do wrong?

You knew it would end, but you lit it anyway.


So to you my love,

On this February the 14th,

I won’t gift you with teddy bears or valentine’s day cards.

But instead, I’ll gift you with a cigarette.

My last lit cigarette.

Leaving town by Ben Heiss - Long Road Sixth Form College

portions of this evening

swing slightly with a subtle waltz

it's a free thing, with a smokey scent

I told you I'm no wolf

playing gunfights in the surroundings fields

like “wheat chewing Texans”

these fields that have been open walls

seemingly rise high around this house

they stack up above the blinds

until the mute blue is shut out

but if you love this little room, if you love its little sounds

between the bed and your bookcase

like Kerouac, we can get around

hitchhiking from the corner of the duvet

to the foot of the door

palms in the ground

I promise you

I'll huff and I'll puff

and I'll blow this house down

What do you do? by Heron Aneurin - Hereford College of Arts

Children drink out of dirty rivers,

What do you do?

You stand to the side and say that nothing is being done.

What do you do?

You scream, shout and point fingers,

But what do you do?

You say that the government isn’t doing anything to help those children who drink out of dirty rivers.

But neither do you.

Look at yourself and ask: what can you do?

The tree runs deep by Craig Trueman - Northern College

As the tree stands tall,

the roots run deep,

as the environment changes,

we do not speak, soulful as we are.

Wise owls keep on watching,

as my branches reach so far as I try and touch the stars.

My bark is thick outside, you can see my age inside.

As my leaves fall off in autumn,

I have nothing left to hide.

Waiting for the summer too evolve into something new,

I keep learning about this world we live on,

but do you?

I am home by Michelle Allen - Northern College

I am home

Comfortable and inviting

It’s where I want to be

It’s safe and yet exciting

The place I love the most

It makes me never want to leave

My favourite place I’ve been

I love the way it feels

So familiar and secure

I can be myself here

Some call it college, I call it home.

Thank you

This day seemed so far away when I first started in 2018.

Now that it has arrived, I find it hard to believe how quickly time has passed.

Nevertheless, with the support and direction, I believe I am prepared to face the challenges of tomorrow.

Many students probably never stop to consider the impact their college has had on them, I can honestly say that without Northern College, I would not be where I am today.

I'm grateful that you've given me access to so many possibilities and have given me the best chance of succeeding.

In the Mourne Mountains by Beth Racklyeft - Havant & South Downs College

In the Mourne Mountains I stand at peace.

The wind lifts my heavy feet

And clouds promise to watch over,

My tired body when my consciousness begins to cease.

Blankets of green stretch around me,

Giving a comfort so rarely seen.


The heavy clouds above multiply and darken.

Casting a protective cover upon

It’s ragged companions.

The sleepy mountain’s orchestra hearken

To the nightingales song,

A peacefully sung promise.


Through the clouds peek delicate stars so perfectly placed.

Seemingly watching over

Us escapees seeking solace.

That in this place find our dreams embraced,

Away from the nightmarish streets

That haunt our brains.


There the darkness provides not security,

But a murderess canvas,

For the endless troubles.

Then is when the bullets strike in obscurity.

Ripping down even the young and

Innocent enough not to know.


There in the wretched streets the night is no time to recover.

No sacred hours of sleep,

But a strange sensation

Of knowing the sins that the darkness will cover.

Of broken glass and families,

Left unseen till the blackbird sings.


Lying here in the mountainous haven,

I can't possibly see,

How this wonderous same sky

Is the one that covers the murders of our generations.

Only a few miles from here,

from this untouched refuge.


I wonder if the mountains can hear the terrors.

Do they cry the same tears,

Of generations of loss.

Crying for our ancestors and all our errors.

Do they miss the peaceful people

That once used to walk over them.

Or do they lie in a sacred unknowing utopia,

Protected by their rugged wildness.

Do the whispers get carried from,

Worried lips and blown far away.

For surely if they knew,

They would be crying too.

I need some piano lessons by Daisy Ashcroft - Havant & South Downs College

The piano’s on the floor,

Sitting cross-legged on the carpet,

Press the keys one time more -

Coz of course the fragmented chords are better

Than the silence at the door.


Find an old notebook;

Don’t want to waste the nice paper.

Just save it for a better day month

When I’ll be able to make something pretty,

Something nice to look at,

Something witty.


Not today, though,

My socks are off,

Scrunched up next to me

As I’m stuck dreaming of


Her- it’s always her now.

Moonlight on the sheets

Thoughts of her emerge,

Just suppress the urge

To pray that she’ll be mine.

See, I don’t know how to pray -


I’ve spoken to God before

But He never told me

What it’s like to have a crush,

Before sending me slamming through the door,

Choking on the splinters,

Then shattered my heart to pieces.


Glass shards are now mending,

But my request for help’s still pending:

How do I even start to explain

These new feelings in which I’m treading,

No lifebelt to save me?


Is the water too deep,

Too shallow, too familiar?

I’m going insane, my brain’s

Completely filled with her -

God, it sucks that she came

At the same time anxiety decided to resurge,

To suck me back down and purge

Me of recognition.


How dare it return again?

Make my stomach churn again?

I just want to learn again

And simply create -

Beauty in words, I miss it so much.


Is it hidden in these keys?

In the yellowing plastic, in these

Stupid hands of mine?

Just take me out of this state,

Give me back my crutch,

I don’t want these thoughts,

Don’t want this weight;


I want my heart to fly

And I want these chords to be music.

But what’s most of all is that I

Want to take love’s hand,

Put my socks back on,

Start to understand

These feelings and

Write a happy song.

Just one.

Untitled by Emma Boddy - Havant & South Downs College

‘66 Bronco roll up roll up rolled down

Plastic Jesus shivering on the dashboard

I lick his fingers as he sings Jerusalem

A stray cat in his lap

Purring praying preying


Promising he’ll take me somewhere special

I close my eyes and hope he’ll carry me home


Motel 6

Mewling into my hair, a newborn spitting out its milk, underbaked Wilhelm scream

His skin webs like the fermented pith of an orange

I hold it between my teeth

Ready to swallow

Citric carrion and sweat and junk


He arches his back, he has a cigarette burn above a tattoo of Norma Jeane

Humming hotel lights fry it red and sour

I suck at his neck, cushioning its heartbeat on my tongue


James Dean was called the human ashtray

Swaddled in a tarp of petrol and formaldehyde

Brando puckered his belly with Camels before he kissed it

Cradled eleven children whilst his lover curled back into the earth spineless and swollen

Tongue turned up at God


Bucking my legs I’m Jett Rink

Skinned pink in the saddle sticky and ripe

My mouth opens and the only thing it slugs is cold air

And I think about going to sleep

Untitled by Brodey Robson - Middlesbrough College

The weather is extremely biting and bitter. His teeth clatter and his body shakes violently. Desolated, awaiting the dreaded demon to loiter around me. Whom may this evil spawning creature be?

Tears of joy,

Replaced with pain,

Chanced happiness,

Destroyed again,

Just not good enough,

To be more than a friend,

This is his life,

Beginning to end.

Teen drug abuse is how our society is being demolished. Children crumbling to the ground.

In the movies drowning is dramatic and chaotic, someone yells and ripples their arms, they dip below the waves and come up in a dramatic fashion while those on dry land scramble to save them.

However, …

No one saved ben. Deserted. Forgotten. Alone.

Three compressed years of failed relationships, broken brains, and taunting temptations.

Never wanted to go in that place, that madhouse, that booby hatch. There wasn’t one word you could say that wouldn’t be taken as insane.

Every little thing was over scrutinized, every emotion taken as a sign of imbalance, every movement was analysed.

Then the pills slowly suffocated my essence painfully but surely.

Sow a thought, and you reap an act; sow an act, and you reap a habit; sow a habit, and you reap a character; sow a character, and you reap a destiny.

But- it wasn’t destiny all along it was his fate…

Sick Girl by Chloe Brown - East Coast College

If I could hold on just a little longer, maybe I would still be there with you?

Mum stroking our hair as we talked, gazing at the moon whilst dad would play piano.

That didn’t happen. It wasn’t realistic, my hair started to fall out and I became sick.

Some say it wasn’t meant to be but you saw me, full of life, right?

I deteriorated quickly, my hair fell out and my identity was stripped, I was invisible. But you saw me!

Invisibility was meant to be a superpower, but I just faded away. Would the world ever see me? Or am I just a label?

“Sick girl”

“Sick girl”

“Sick girl”

Make it stop! I don’t want this superpower anymore! I may be deceased, but I had a name, it was Madeleine!

If I could hold on just a little longer, maybe the world would remember that name, Madeleine!

If I could hold on just a little longer maybe you all would see me once again.

I could glue myself back together, we could run through the trees like we used to.

It was no use, I crumbled and fell. Would I ever be well again? No.

My life was a tornado that suddenly came to an end. Oh, how I wish I could be the chaos in the storm once again.

Maybe that storm would end, and I’d be the rainbow.

Mum! Dad! Can you see me?

I could be the whistle in the wind!

Mum! Dad! Can you hear me?

Or am I still invisible in plain sight?

You saw me though! Gazing up at the moon, looking for me in the night sky.

I was there twinkling so brightly as you pointed at me. How I miss you so dearly.

I have to say goodbye, but this isn’t the end. Look up at the sky and you’ll see me once again.


Footpaths by Kayleigh Clinton - East Coast College

I stood there wondering which path to take

Fearfully wondering what decision to make

The pathways were slippery, lengthy and Un straight

Inside me all I could hear was the goad of my peers collate

Walking towards the path I had wanted to go

The pressure I felt seemed to suddenly deflate

Quickly I walked further along

Now I knew where it was, I belonged

I was on the right footpath

My heart was happy again, I could finally laugh

No longer wading, No longer fading

I wasn’t going to sit there in waiting

My Footpaths are chosen.

I remember by Samantha Teun - East Coast College

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember.

I remember the laughter, the love, the loss.

I lived it all with you.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember.

I remember the shouts, the shrills, the silence.

I loved it with you.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember.

I remember the feeling, the warm touch, the tender hand.

I felt it all with you.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember.

I remember tears, the sadness, the emptiness.

I cried with you

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember the child, the teen, the adult.

I grew up with you.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember.

I remember the spring, the summer, the autumn.

I was mesmerized by them with you.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember.

I remember the frozen toes, cold hands, wet clothes.

I was frozen too.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

I remember.

I remember to grow, to change, to sleep.

I watch for you always.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

You remember.

You remembered to rest on my trunk, sleep under my lush branches, to use my fallen limbs as toys.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

You remember.

You remembered to eat under me, to sleep under my care, to bring your loved ones to our place.

Standing tall, alone on the hill.

They remember.

They remember to let you rest, to rest with me for always,

Standing tall, with you on the hill.

Untitled by Zainab Javed - Burnley College

Freedom is a word that is often used, but rarely

defined. What does it mean to be free? Is it a

political ideal, a personal goal, or something

else entirely? In this essay, I will explore the idea

of personal freedom and what it means to be

free from social norms and expectations.

From a young age, we are taught to follow the

rules and behave in a certain way. We are told

that success in life requires us to get good

grades, go to college, and find a stable job. But

what happens when those expectations clash

with our own desires and goals? How can we

find a sense of freedom and independence in a

world that seems to value conformity above all


One way to answer these questions is to look at

the role of education in shaping our ideas about

freedom. In college, for example, we are often

encouraged to pursue certain majors or careers,

even if they don't align with our interests or

passions. This can create a sense of pressure and

anxiety, as we struggle to balance our own

desires with the expectations of others.

But what if we could find a way to be true to

ourselves, even in the face of social pressure?

What if we could find a way to pursue our own

dreams and goals, regardless of what others

might think? This is the essence of personal

freedom, and it is something that we should all

strive to achieve.

Of course, this is easier said than done. Finding

personal freedom requires us to be brave, to

take risks, and to be willing to fail. It requires us

to be honest with ourselves about what we truly

want, even if it means going against the grain.

But in the end, the reward is worth the effort.

When we find a way to be true to ourselves, we

experience a sense of joy and fulfillment that

cannot be found anywhere else.

In conclusion, personal freedom is a goal that we

should all strive for. It is the key to living a happy

and fulfilling life, and it requires us to be brave,

honest, and true to ourselves. While it can be

difficult to achieve, the reward is worth the effort.

So let us all work to find our own path in life, and

to be free from the expectations of others.