On Becoming a Fish
Published by Seren
Emily Hinshelwood’s new poetry collection was inspired by a series of walks around the 186-mile Pembrokeshire coastal path, known for its spectacular cliff-top views of the Irish Sea and the Bristol Channel. The poems are deeply engaged with the environment and human nature’s impact on this beautiful stretch of coastline.
Out to sea there are fishermen, pirates and shipwrecks; on the shore there are neolithic memorials of long ago, set amid the remnants of recent industrial decline. Also present are characters conjured from history – including the ‘four hundred Welsh Women wearing stovepipe hats’ who foiled the last invasion of Britain in 1797 – as well as contemporary encounters with lifeboat crews, lighthouse keepers and skinny-dippers.
Emily Hinshelwood was born in London. Her previous collection is Sucking at Sticky Fingers (2004). Her poetry has also been published in The Rialto, Poetry Wales, Ambit, Aesthetica and New Welsh Review. She won the John Tripp Award for Spoken Poetry in 2003, and was shortlisted for the Bridport Prize and the Forward Prize for Best Individual Poem in 2010. She moved to Wales in 1997 and worked as a lecturer at Swansea University before choosing to concentrate on writing and environmental work. She lives in Tairgwaith, south Wales.