Margins, boundaries, barriers, borders, thresholds, transitions and liminal spaces

Ruth HartleyDisplacement, Journey, Migration, ZambiaLeave a Comment

Bordering We were blocked, stopped and stuck at the border between Mexico and Belize for five long hours. It was a strange way to exist – a state of waiting in which nothing happens. We didn’t have the right papers. We were in Limbo, that place of meaningless suspension in which you wait endlessly for judgement on your soul. Being […]

Leaving and going – migrants and tourists.

Ruth HartleyDisplacement, Journey, Migration4 Comments

I want to stay at home Leaving home before sunrise is a plunge into an abyss. Black moments before brain functions. A home disguised and hidden under bleak darkness. Cheekbones ache with cold. Nose sniffs up tears. Departure weighs more than a baggage allowance. Loss is heavy and sadness clutches my heart and trips up my feet. Yet I love […]

Sidelined

Ruth HartleyDisplacement, History, Journey, Migration, Race2 Comments

Writers and journalists

Belonging and longing for home

Ruth HartleyDisplacement, Exile, Home, Identity, Journey, Migration, Race, Refugee2 Comments

Settlers and the unsettled I grew up in a settler community of new homes but the land we took was already the home of African peoples. Many of my school friends’ families were Jewish refugees from Eastern Europe who had nowhere else to go and hoped one day to go to Israel. I quote from a friend Paul M who […]

Blame it on the man in the brandy barrel – Admiral Nelson

Ruth HartleyApartheid, Colonialism, Family, Hamera and Hartley, Identity, Migration, Politics, Power, Racism, South Africa, The Shaping of Water, The Tin Heart Gold Mine, When I Was Bad, When We Were Wicked11 Comments

Art and storytelling 200 years later by a distant descendant. Born into the British Empire during the Second World War in a colonial country that no longer exists, I’ve been flung around in a turbulent vortex of political and personal change. My art and my writing are the ways I hang on to the world spinning around me. I have […]