Zonailo, (Canada, b.1947)
Born in Vancouver, British Columbia,
Zonailo attended Scripps College, in Claremont, California; and
the University of Rochester, New York, where she published poems
in student literary magazines and studied with classics scholar,
Norman O. Brown (author of Love’s Body and Life Against
Death). She received her B.A. in literature from the University
of British Columbia (1971) and M.A. from Simon Fraser University
During her life, Zonailo has maintained
an interest in mythology, archetypal studies, and Jungian psychology.
Her poetic vision encompasses a personal and feminist viewpoint
together with that of a mythic and universal perspective. While
still an undergraduate, she married the son of Dr John Weir Perry,
an eminent Jungian psychoanalyst and author.
In the 1970s, Zonailo gave birth
to a son and a daughter. In 1977 she founded Caitlin Press, which
she ran with Cathy Ford and Ingrid Klassen, and then on her own
until the press was sold and relocated to northern British Columbia.
Her first full-length book of poems, The Wide Arable Land,
was published in 1981. She has written several books of poetry
and poetry chapbooks, and a memoir about her childhood and Doukhobor
heritage. Poetry books include: Zen Forest (1987); The
Taste of Giving: New & Selected Poems (1990); Memory
House (1995)); the moon with mars in her arms (2006).
Since 1992 to 2008, Zonailo has lived in
Quebec, with Montreal-born poet Stephen Morrissey, whom she married
in 1995. From 1992-1999 she collaborated with graphic artist and
poet Ed Varney, producing broadsides, pamphlets and chapbooks
with The Poem Factory/Usine de Poeme. During the 1980s and 1990s,
Zonailo served on the executives of national and provincial literary
organizations. In 2000, she and her husband, Stephen Morrissey,
founded Coracle Press. Zonailo works as a freelance editor and
consultant. She writes and lectures in astrology under the name
Carolyn Joyce. She has worked as a time-management/life-planning
consultant and taught creative writing.
Zonailo is a lyric poet; her poems
have been set to music, recorded and broadcast. Her poetic sensibility
is informed by the landscape of the west coast; by her studies
in mythology and Jungian psychology; and by her experiences as
a woman. In addition, her Doukhobor (spirit-wrestler)
heritage brings another dimension of spiritual and historical
intensity to her work. Her paternal grandmother and family were
part of the 1899 immigration of the Russian Doukhobor peasants
to Canada, sponsored by Count Leo Tolstoy.
The poetry of Carolyn Zonailo is
erotic, spiritual, and compassionate. Zonailo’s poetry is
crafted from the particulars of the world she lives in, expressing
a feminist perspective that is intimate and immediate. She balances
an observational clarity regarding the everyday, with that of
the visionary and poet. Zonailo’s poetry is witness to her
aesthetic belief in the inherently human activity of writing poetry.
Selected books: Nature’s
Grace (1993), Wading the Trout River (1997), The
Goddess in the Garden (2002), finalist, A.M. Klein Poetry