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Briar Wood grew up in South Auckland. Until 2012, she lived and worked as a lecturer in Britain, where she published poetry, fiction and essays. Returning to Northland places, where her Te Hikutū ki Hokianga, Ngāpuhi Nui whakapaka resonates with ecological concerns, she now combines travel, occasional lecturing and a focus on writing. Briar was born in Taumarunui in 1958.