A lyrical, poetic essay collection that blends memoir with powerful writing on the natural world, taking us from London to New Zealand, Shanghai to Malaysia – from the winner of the Nan Shepherd Prize
Nina Mingya Powles first learned to swim in Borneo – where her mother was born and her grandfather studied freshwater fish. There, the local swimming pool became her first body of water. Through her life there have been others that have meant different things, but have still been, in their own way, home: from the wild coastline of New Zealand to a pond in northwest London.
In lyrical, powerful prose, Small Bodies of Water weaves together memories, dreams and nature writing. Exploring everything from migration, food, family, earthquakes and the ancient lunisolar calendar, Nina reflects on a girlhood spent growing up between two cultures, and what it means to belong.
Nina Mingya Powles is a writer, poet and maker from Aotearoa, currently living in London. Her poetry collection Magnolia 木蘭 (2020) was a finalist in the Ockham Book Awards and the Forward Prize. She is also the author of several zines and pamphlets, as well as a food memoir, Tiny Moons (2020). Her collection of essays, Small Bodies of Water (2021) won the Nan Shepherd Prize, a literary prize for underrepresented voices in nature writing.
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