Author: petra hilgers

Loneliness grows waves then oceans

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Loneliness grows waves then oceans „Und die Einsamkeit wächst in mir wie eine riesige Welle aus dem Meer meiner Vergangenheit” – Chris Anderson (unpublished letter) We have grappled    we have battled have searched    asked    listened out We have celebrated    cherished    laughed too loud together We have kept each other sleepless We have avoided    ignored    shut out written    waltzed    wasted as only lovers can who don’t see […]

day-dreamy days

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Nature / relationships

Would it make me a better person if I could remember what I used to daydream about? They are back thorny rusty right-angled casting spells in the speed of knowing little time left the elegance of not caring about it their webs the same silk as moth cocoons Gone now that black feathered fuzzy moth on the wall above us as we made love somewhere dark and reassuring living the night like your soul immune […]



It’s the hidden things… Yesterday the sun x-rayed lace curtains onto the old kitchen tiles sharp like a boning knife’s edge cutting through the yellow of years of pots hissing on hobs    froth spitting out of angry mouths the stainless steel extractor fan thundering swear words above hands wielding ladles    lids    liquids    dousing appetites with cost-effectiveness. Lace shrouds    clouds    those put away in rooms too large to keep clean […]

Between the Years, 2017


On the tumulus sun rays reach the tops of twisted trees drawing creamy lines between ancient oaks like a spider’s web. Beneath lichen-licked twigs leaves remain frozen in dying their silence striking a chord on my heart. * Days I cannot grasp blur past like a landscape in a blizzard tugging me off-course. Snow casts darkness before laying to rest on Earth muffled by the density of compact clouds I move past shadows that are […]

cross-cultural conversations


white EU migrant woman & black Caribbean British Canadian man ‘What is I beheld?’ ‘Past tense from I behold.’ ‘But what’s that in non-Shakespearean-English?’ ‘It’s real English. It’s like (pauses) I behold that tree’ (gestures with his arm somewhere outside) ‘Like I see that tree?’ ‘Like Fuck! Check this tree out!’ Behold that man.


Travelling / Uncategorized

I wish I could start writing about Brussels all over again. I wonder whether I’d still have to explain that it was actually Mechelen we went to and never Brussels though we did have a golden afternoon in Brussels that ended on a high look-out – the city, framed by dirty baby-boy blue with pink stains in it, to our feet. Ashen but ready to rise as we walked back down into it. Also, I […]

honouring a place of dark

Stories / Tower Blocks / Uncategorized

black eye now that wall I remembered a face of a young woman chiselled out of plaster revealing a matrix of red bricks tearing her out wind tearing her hair apart another wall in another city same not-quite white wall large black eye traced with carbon paper like mascara smudged down a cheek white wet puffy what happened before carelessness played havoc carelessness played played played don’t play with fire we all blamed the girl […]

lost things…

Stories / Unexpected

Something has shifted. It began recently on a Sunday in September when I woke up from thoughts of doubt and betrayal, feeling perfectly uneasy, first, then angry which was almost a relief. Since then things kept changing. Every new day another leaf fallen, the tree a bit barer, the light a degree warmer, the air a degree cooler, the atmosphere a degree clearer and my thoughts, too, sometimes at least. Yesterday, I forgot my scarf […]


relationships / Unexpected

A friend has offered me her space on the Sussex coast while she and her partner are travelling. A space with a cabin and a caravan, chicken and greenhouses, fruit trees and wood pigeons, a kitchen and WiFi. A space to escape from a hectic summer with a few blows – the shock of Brexit, the discomfort of a back injury, the uncertainties of my relationship that’s now come to a sudden full-stop in mid-air. […]

an offering…

Portrait / Travelling

… of a poem that I wrote during my week in Scotland recently… my mother thinks my life is a going-round-in-circles barefeet on grass after a snowstorm I don’t feel the cold follow the bends the steps of the many before me between old stones worn smooth from pressure, friction and distance then brought up here by determined hands I imagine them large in the centre I find a stone with thin waves of sediments laid […]


Travelling / writing about blogging and blogging about writing

Not migration this time… In April I’ve travelled to a Creative Writing Retreat where we were invited to write a 100-word journal every morning. I’ve now followed the urge to re-read mine and found myself threading together bits of stories like those stones I found on a beach one day. Nowhere near as orderly… Two days of travel from London to the Isle of Iona: 3 trains, 2 ferries, 1 bus. Then 2 feet underneath the weight […]