Maroula Blades is an Afro-British poet/writer living in Berlin. The winner of The Caribbean Writer 2014 Flash Fiction Competition and Erbacce Prize 2012, her first poetry collection Blood Orange is published by Erbacce-press. Works have been published in Volume Magazine, Abridged O-40, Kaleidoscope Magazine, Caribbean Writer, Edition Assemblage, Trespass Magazine, Words with Jam, Blackberry Magazine, Thrice Magazine and by Verbrecher Verlag, Cornelsen Verlag, The Latin Heritage Foundation and Peepal Tree and other anthologies and magazines. Maroula’s poetry/music programme has been presented on several stages in Germany i.e. STADTSPRACHEN – internationales Literaturfestival, BIGSAS (Festival Afrikanischer und Afrikanisch-Diasporischer Literaturen), The Cologne Poetry Festival (Kölner Lyrikfestival), International Berlin Poetry Festival and Leipzig Book Fair. Her debut EP-album Word Pulse is released by Havavision Records (UK).
What brought you to Berlin? Love? World politics? Or was it a coincidence?
I moved to this city twenty-four years ago. Berlin is an attractive city with an energetic international artist-friendly scene. My intention was to find like-minded people who I could collaborate with on creative projects.
What do you love about Berlin?
The large green open spaces, such areas are seldom found in a thriving city. I especially love Charlottenburg. The borough is vibrant and lush. I often cycle in the beautiful grounds of Schloss Charlottenburg and along the canal towards Tiergarten.
What do you miss in Berlin?
I miss nothing in Berlin; I have everything here that is necessary for me to live a fulfilled happy life.
What is your favorite spot in Berlin?
My favourite area in Berlin is Wannsee. During the summer months, I often take pleasant boats trips on the river Havel. Also I enjoy walking along the charming footpaths of the Pfaueninsel and picnicing in the grounds of the Jagdschloss Glienicke.
Would you say you are a different person in Berlin? A different translator? And if yes, in what way?
No, I don’t think so. The themes I address in my writing are global social concerns that always influence, challenge and inspire me, regardless where I live.
Which existing literary work do you wish you would have written?
I would have loved to have written the novel "Beloved" by Toni Morrison. The book is poignant; the prose is poetic and evocative. For me, it is a very memorable read.
2014 The winner of The Caribbean Writer Flash Fiction Competition,
2013 2nd in the Leaf Art and Poetry Contest (USA)
2012 Winner of the Erbacce Prize (UK) for poetry