Comment, Prose

Old Habits Die Hard

by Monim Wains Perhaps the most comprehensive definition of tradition is the idiom in the title of this article; tradition is nothing but old habits that refuse to stay in the past where they first began. Of course, this sounds quite critical. With the constant need for change and improvement in the world, old habits […]

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Poetry, Prose

Destination / Extermination

by Ruida Ding   Four past twelve. ‘Forty-two seconds left to make it to the Exam  Schools’; I took in a last eyeful of the resplendent Oxonian  architecture and let out a deep long sigh, ‘My sincerest gratitude,  dearest punctual lecturer.’ A swarm of students made the beeline for the  Bodleian transport booths and I […]

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Comment, Prose

Fortune – A Fresher’s Perspective

by Martin Yip Would you agree with the claim that all freshers are fortunate? Each year, about 3200 undergraduates are admitted to Oxford, which comes to a 17% admissions rate. That percentage is slated to decrease, as the number of applicants has been increasing over the last few years, while the number of places has […]

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Poetry

I Woke up This Morning as a Mermaid

by Simone Fraser   I woke up this morning as a mermaid Silver scales rubbing the scratchy university-issue bed sheets It had happened before, Slipping under water in familiar a chipped porcelain bath tub Or the pool around the corner from my childhood home I’d wait it out surrounded in bubbles or friendship Marvel at […]

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Prose

A Fresh Perspective

by Monim Wains Welcome to Oxford, the best university in the world! (For three years running, don’t you know, no one in the UK has ever done that before!) And welcome to Oriel, the hands-down, no questions asked, best college in Oxford.  That’s quite an introduction to live up to, but the number of times […]

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Diary, Prose

Memories of Home

by Soo Yi Yun The heavy downpour, the brief thunderstorm, and petrichor fill up the air— down the cycling path and the memory lane called home. The rain in Oxford has been reminiscent of my home country since last week. In a tropical country like Malaysia, it is common to have downpours every now and then. […]

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Comment, Prose

Roughly Elementary

by Michael Angerer The City of Oxford has a sad reputation for its particularly high number of homeless people; according to city council data, 61 rough sleepers were recorded in 2017, up from 33 in 2016. At the beginning of February this year, the city council had to activate its Severe Weather Emergency Protocol in […]

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Creative Writing, Prose

Pushing Up Through the Pavement

by Chloe Jacobs In an alcove before the Rad Cam, there has been a shipwreck. Some small vessel has run aground on the cobblestones and left the debris of life behind, floating on thin waves of pure foam. Or, perhaps, these are the remains of an ancient civilisation. Great Pyramids have spilled onto English pavements, […]

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Poetry

‘Mind’s Eye’

by Tom Saer Please, my deer, sell your tiger’s hides and Harvest my empathy I promise it’s worth it? In an anxious Greek murmur of the brazen-clad I found your stone antlers Weeping words from a cherry tree In a fucking dance I will grind you into a paste I’ve met you before synthesised waltz […]

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Comment, Diary, Prose

Love Note to Oxford

by Shirley Russell I suppose it should come as no surprise that I’ve fallen completely in love with you. After all, this is a return and not an introduction. I’ve seen you before; I’ve seen your spires and your streets and your narrow little lanes and cosy coffee shops. I’ve been in your libraries and […]

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Humour, Prose

Why People Should Not Go On The Grass

by Patrick Hegarty-Morrish We have little left to remember of this city of aquatint. Its morning mists, grey springtime, the rare summer’s day, fleeting like a lovebird’s escape between hedgerows; wafts of pheasant roasting over her gables and cupolas, through cloister and quadrangle, carried to the dreaming student on a weightless breeze to displace smells […]

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Prose

Bells’ End

by Jenny Potter   Awaken me on Sunday morning Chiming for an hour or two And once you pause, I think you’re waning, You begin to toll anew. What’s the time? Who knows? Who cares? The occasion? We need none. Each time you catch me unawares And torment me until you’re done. You’re hungover? What […]

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Interview, Prose

An Interview with John Simpson CBE

A few weeks ago, BBC Foreign Correspondent John Simpson give the Ascension Day sermon in Oriel Chapel. The Poor Print’s political correspondent, William McDonald, caught up with Mr Simpson before the service. Comfortably ensconced in an armchair, John Simpson looks rather like most other septuagenarians. But his kind smile and rugged features disguise a steely […]

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Culture, Prose

Is there life after your Year Abroad?

by Christy Callaway-Gale The beginning and end of everyone’s year abroad (yes, I am about to generalise, which in Oxford’s terms is the bait for your tutor to rip your essay into unbelievably miniature shreds) can be summed up by the question, how are you feeling about leaving? Surprisingly, I think both my answers, although […]

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Culture, Prose

On Dignity

by Alec Siantonas In what we now call the Ancient Near East, beards were a sign of dignity. Beards adorned the virile and the vigorous, the warrior and father of warriors. I myself have small desire to sire warriors, but I sympathise with the viewpoint. I delight in my hair, in all its luxuriant abundance. […]

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Culture, Prose

The Gift of Memory

by Aidan Chivers After the dizzying blur of my first Oxford term, it was a strange feeling to find myself back, walking our dog, retracing the same route which had become a familiar after-school routine throughout my school days. After eighteen years in the same place, no tree, lamp-post or speck of moss on the […]

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Comment, Prose

Honour Above Everything

by Madeline Briggs My high school had this motto – it was on a plaque in every classroom, repeated at chapel and assembly, hanging on banners around campus: ‘Wisdom more than Knowledge, Service beyond Self, Honour Above Everything’. I doubt many of my classmates spend a lot of time thinking about it today. Most stuff […]

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Prose

Eighth Week – A Poem

by Jenny Potter Lips bruised by the cool taste of your Mouth still clinging to my tongue. College steps, Cool stone, Feelings of ineptitude. A physical catharsis: Tracing the shapes of words but Releasing only the sounds Of a metronomic breath. The kiss of the mist Frustration at the expectation of Social conformism. Steel steps […]

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Comment, Prose

Rhodes Must Fall: A Perspective

Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh is a DPhil student in International Relations and an organising member of Rhodes Must Fall Oxford Since its inception, Rhodes Must Fall (RMF) has bent over backwards to accommodate Oxford’s ignorance. But the time has come to speak plainly. Oxford’s response to our campaign has been nothing short of shameful. Oriel College’s backtrack […]

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Culture, Prose

The Case for Zero Waste

by Sophie Barnes We have produced more plastic in the last ten years than we have over the last hundred, yet it takes approximately 500-1000 years to degrade. Zero Waste is an attempt to reduce what we throw out to zero, making our lives 100% sustainable. It’s a growing online community. The Zero Waste Bloggers […]

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Culture, Food & Drink, Prose

8 Green Bottles: A Drinking Song

by Aidan Chivers Wondering what to have to accompany your steak next Monday formal?  The highly-regarded freshers’ wine team give you the definitive verdict on the range of wines on offer, with a single adjective on each and a score out of 111: 8 green bottles, standing on the wall 8 green bottles, standing on […]

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Comment, Prose

In Defence of Protest – Editorial

The Editors For an aeroplane’s aluminium and composite canister to fly serenely through the sky, two great, guzzling turbines spin ferociously on each wing. These explosive extremities provide the force to carry those in the comfortable, quiet middle toward their destination. The Poor Print recently published a cartoon on the Rhodes Must Fall movement, in […]

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Poetry

Ritual of the Essay Crisis

by Alex Waygood   ‘Twas in the early hours of Monday morn That in the libr’y, one could plainly see A boy: who, with hunch’d back and bended neck, Didst type away on music theory. The clock struck three, then four, then five! The college soundly snored – Yet still the lad did keenly strive […]

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Interview, Prose

Oriel Interviews: ‘Just a job, but…’

Kathy Goudman, 65, lodge porter receptionist at Oriel, takes the rough with the smooth and doesn’t mind being a shoulder to cry on. | Interviewed by Giorgio Scherrer “My mother was the Yorkshire girl, my dad the Londoner. He was too short for the army in World War II, so he was sent down the […]

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Culture, Prose

All You Need Is Change

by Lucy Mellor A common character description, be it in a novel, short story or play, is ‘doesn’t like change’. Whether said explicitly in the writing or, in the case of more crafty writers, implied by the character’s actions, it often seems to be an easy way of giving their personality that extra quirk, or […]

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Prose

You Cannot Pass – A Sonnet

by Peter Gent ‘You cannot pass,’ said he, despite his foe. Then all the Orcs stood still among the stone; Retreated eight, dead silence fell, and woe. No fellowship-for Gandalf’s will alone Did face the Balrog’s dreams when he did leave His morbid home and search a higher life. ‘No pass,’ said Gandalf, ‘shall you […]

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Culture, Prose

Cinderella No More: A Brief History of the Viola

Andrew Boothroyd Strident, assured, passionate, virtuoso. These are not words normally associated with the viola, one of the more modest and inconspicuous members of the orchestral family. But anyone who hasn’t heard the distinctive sound of this unheralded stringed instrument should have been at the Oriel Champagne Concert in Michaelmas Term 2015, where we heard […]

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Interview, Prose

Oriel Interviews: ‘I like to be popular’

Dawid Adam Piekarz, 30, barman and scout at Oriel thinks this year’s students are an especially amazing bunch. | Interviewed by Giorgio Scherrer “I first came to Oxford on a Friday. I had flown over from Poland for a job interview, because a friend of mine was working in Hall and had told me that a position […]

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Comment, Prose

Misinformation in the Rhodes Campaign

by Madeline Briggs CW: some racial slurs which are key to the argument in this piece have been partially **-ed out, but have not been completely removed as the article discusses the use of those words directly Martin Luther King once said ‘Hate cannot drive out hate-only love can do that’. On 9th April 2015, […]

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Comment, Prose

Sadder than Fiction: The Battle for Hoth and Paris

by Giorgio Scherrer The battle of Hoth in Star Wars Episode V was just being lost when I casually checked my Twitter account and discovered that this was not an ordinary evening. It was movie night in the JCR, the second film of the evening, and it was 13th November. From about 10pm – when […]

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Culture, Prose, Reviews

Twelfth Night – A Preview

by Jacob Warn Welcome to a world of music, of love, and of language. This is a world of drunken revelry and cross-gartered madness, overwriting a history inscribed with the vestiges of war, loss and social change. Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night is just a comedy. Some say. But it is this kind of thinking that results in the generic […]

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