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'Everything, Nameless'

Writing: Ollie Turbitt

Illustration: Dani Rothmann

Ollie Turbitt is a student, musician, and writer based in Edinburgh. His creative inspirations include avant-garde music scenes, DIY culture, the Beat Poets, Zen Buddhism, lots of coffee, and the experience of living in the city. So far, Ollie has self-published one volume of poetry, and another one is on the horizon. For all enquiries contact: 'Everything, Nameless' is a stream-of-consciousness representation of my attempts to find my own identity in and around Edinburgh.


Crowds gather, dissolve, regroup & disperse

thick sheets of harshest rain

obscure everything -

I’m here again,

tucked into the neatest corner

of a generic coffee-shop,

drink half-drunk,

talking to myself

& searching high above the heads of everyone,

wet, displaced & grumbling

through the blanched glass

& out into the cold -

myself reflected

equally cold & empty;

me with Roman nose,

inherited anglophile attitudes

& everything else

that separates


I know I exist

somewhere in the city


between the first cup of own-brand coffee at dawn & the long walk home from some student pub in a lamp-post auburn haze at night,

between the dying autumn leaves at Greyfriars - a blood-red footprint on black snow - again & again & again,

between monumental piles of withered books & yellowed pamphlets, designed to remove myself from here & now,

between familiar cobbled labyrinths & cold-hearted brutalist wasteland & overwhelming light under the motorway,

between tourist information & an empire of tea-cosies, overpriced whiskies & I-heart-Scotland shirts,

between shaking hands with the university Marxists & accidentally befriending fascists on the way home,

between old comrades & a constantly renewing fear for the future,

between a hundred rows of disavowed teenagers, packed like crestfallen sardines in some grim club, awaiting salvation night after night,

between god knows who,

between the conversations of everyone else, everywhere else: endless supermarket newly-weds, gap-year radicalists & nightclub romantics, all on the same page -

between lucid depictions of Christ in the Cathedral & the resolutely godless high-rise utopia that suffocates it -

between genuine ideals at Holyrood & transplanted fervour manifested through pale crosses on cheap foreign fabric,

between pale crosses in the graveyard

between me & myself

between me & myself

I still haven’t found it

crowds gather, dissolve, regroup & disperse

thick sheets of harshest rain

obscure everything -

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