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“I am a body that possesses / limited cognition – / an integral / but trivial speck / of infinity.” ~ I Am
“sanctuary from the unchained dragon down the block – / jade eyes flashing as it swoops on bony wings, / its red scales made of spent syringes and inverted bottles / that bristle in a frenzy to gorge on the festering:” ~ Yin and Yang
“A trembling sun drips / beads of molten gold / onto disc-shaped pebbles / washed smooth by the surf / that ebbs and flows / with the sensual rhythms / of love-making,” ~ Neruda on the Beach at Capri
“with bombastic swagger / and the braggadocio / of corncob rows / of bleached teeth / mugging behind / artificially parted lips / ventriloquist-like / speaking in goudas, bries, / emmenthals and gruyères,” ~ Snapshots
“They come with casseroles in hand / and hugs that echo through my hollowness –" ~ Shiva Call
“a place where eternity is found among the coral and seaweed – " ~ Temptress
"Angry keys / swing back and forth / in the ignition / as a half-empty bottle / of Jack Daniels / catapults through / the windshield" ~ Jack
“The sun streams through windows / blanketing me with its radiance – / an energizing rebirth / even for the padded paws / scrambling to greet me / with sloppy kisses / and welcome a new day.” ~ Morning Rapture
“Hollowed out corpses / in life-like poses / play soccer, hold hands, / boast their musculature – / a post-mortem / artistic rendition / of red meat.” ~ Bodies Exhibit
“Inky swells heave – / the rhythmic breathing / of sapphire seas / crested with / flashes / of gold / as the sun sinks / below the horizon / and drowns the waters / in darkness.” ~ Sapphire Seas
“your dessicated bones / exposed / to the bleakness of eternity, / unaware of the trees beside you / swaying drunkenly in the wind,” ~ Are Ya Feelin’ Lucky
“ghosts of morning mist / hover above still waters / overturned canoe” ~ Mourning Mist Haiku
"Body encrusted with dried mud, / scales lose their traction / rendering the snake immobile; / unable to escape, it slowly bakes. / The mighty anaconda heaves in agony, / reptilian head thrust backward, / gaping jaws raised towards the sky; / silent screams / rage against its earthen prison” ~ Anaconda
“where the babel below / evanesces into archways / and walls awash / with patterned ceramic tiles – / under cerulean skies / resplendent in their golds, / greens, whites and blues / glistening in the glory / of the African sun” ~ Under Cerulean Skies
“Surly leaden clouds surrender muted beams of light, / Revealing a barely discernable pinpoint adrift, / Spied by weary seagulls buffeted by winds in midflight, / It's a fisherman bravely casting a net from his skiff.” ~ Lake Winnipeg
“silence, / total darkness / except for the flickering / of fluorescent-blue lights / as little fingers typed / terse text messages on their cell phones / while they huddled under desks” ~ Lockdown – This Is Not a Drill
“crushed under sand and mud / to transform him into nothing more / than a carbon-trace memento / whose final bequest / was a heart drawn in the dust / and an "I lov" scrawled / with
trembling hand ~ Ballad of a Coal Miner’s Wife
“even the dogs / have refrained from yelping – / they whimper in their sleep / while their feet twitch / as they chase imaginary rabbits.” ~ Escape
“a spray of letters and syllables / coalesce into droplets of words - / iridescent sounds tinkle / trickling into an ephemeral pool / of stanza and verse” ~ Renga
"chevelure dorée flottante, seins nus, / une queue argentée iridescente caressée par les vagues; / sa bien-aimée guide doucement son amant mortel / partout dans le royaume de Poséidon;” ~ Tentatrice
“cuando las paredes / reflejan las sombras / de los árboles bailando / sensualmente / en la luz de la luna, / pienso en las almas / que susurran sus secretos / tratando de explicar / su existencia espectral,” ~ Noche tras noche
“Sono entropia – / un assortimento casuale / di ossigeno, carbonio, / idrogeno, azoto / e oligoelementi / dentro un corpo / che esiste / in questo momento, / la sua individualità / organicamente interconnessa / all’universale;” ~ Io sono
"多 孩子们 /
?" ~ 多少


Welcome to the official Fern G. Z. Carr website highlighting the work of this contemporary Canadian poet. A Full Member of The League of Canadian Poets, Carr is the President of Project Literacy Kelowna Society, a former lawyer, teacher and past President of the local branch of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. She composes and translates poetry in six languages including Mandarin Chinese. Her poetry has been published extensively worldwide from Finland to Mauritius. Carr is deeply honoured to have one of her poems currently orbiting the planet Mars aboard NASA's MAVEN spacecraft.




  • Pushcart Prize Nominee; nomination from The Worcester Review

  • Carr's poem, "I Am", selected by the Parliamentary Poet Laureate as Poem of the Month for Canada

  • Featured in the The Globe and Mail online arts blog

  • Biographical listing in The World's Lawyer Poets from "Strangers to Us All: Lawyers and Poetry" based on research conducted by Professor James R. Elkins, College of Law, West Virginia University.

  • Carr's poetry was assigned reading for the West Virginia University’s College of Law course entitled “Lawyers, Poets, and Poetry.”

  • Cited as a contributor to the Prakalpana Literary Movement in India

  • Former League of Canadian Poets' Poet-in-Residence

  • Poetry included in various peace exhibits including being air-dropped from the sky in Cyprus as part of "Spring Poetry Rain"

  • One of thirty League of Canadian Poets whose poetry was featured on the LCP National Poetry Month Blog

  • Poems translated into Crimean Tatar, German and Japanese, then published in those languages as well as in Arabic, Tatar Runes and Cyrillic scripts

  • Lesson plans based on Carr's poetry used in high schools in the USA

  • Featured poet in Sipay, an international poetry journal in the Seychelles

  • Carr's poetry studied in schools in the Seychelles

  • Headlined featured poet SOPA Fine Arts Gallery, Kelowna
  • Poetry published in a collection featuring prominent Canadian poets (1883 - 2014) including Leonard Cohen, Bliss Carman and Irving Layton - Goose Lane Editions - Where the Nights Are Twice As Long - "My Secret Fear" (audio recording)

  • Author's Choice - Carr's poetry chosen by a prominent Canadian writer, poet and playwright, selected from 84 issues of a journal for inclusion in a special 20th anniversary anthology in France

  • Featured volunteer spotlight for her work in the promotion of literacy




  • Haiku presently orbiting the planet Mars aboard NASA's MAVEN spacecraft for NASA's Going to Mars with MAVEN Contest

  • A winner of Il Premio Nazionale di Letteratura "Il Meleto di Guido Gozzano" 4° Edizione (Sezione Autori di Lingua Straniera) for her poem in English and her Italian translation (one of four poets chosen for Canada in this international competition) with a public reading of her poem in Italy

  • Selected for Best of from Kind of a Hurricane Press

  • Editor's Choice Award from James Ward Kirk Publishing

  • First Place Winner of Newport Review Writing Contest - Poetry (judged by the Poet Laureate of New Bedford, Massachusetts)

  • A winner of the Great Canadian Haiku Contest (judging led by the Poet Laureate of London ON); Carr's poems were set to music by Juno-nominated singer-composer, Royal Wood, who performed this composition at London's Home County's Folk Festival; the concert was also featured on CHRW Radio

  • Various Ohio Poetry Day contests sponsored by the Ohio Poetry Association and Heidelberg University:
    • First Place Winner - Literary Persona Poetry Contest
    • First Place Winner - Small Stuff Poetry Contest
    • Third Place Winner - A Good Idea Poetry Contest
    • Honourable Mention - Love of Life Poetry Contest
    • Honourable Mention - Great Expectations Poetry Contest
    • Honourable Mention - Ohio Poetry Day Special Award
    • Honourable Mention - The Road Taken Poetry Contest
  • A winner of Poetry Super Highway's Poetry Prompt Contest

  • A winner of Contemporary Literary Review India Christmas Theme Contest

  • A winner of Crow Toes Quarterly We're Just Winging It Here Poetry Contest

  • Honourable Mention for World Haiku Review Shintai Category

  • Honourable Mention for Inner Sins Magazine Cross Words Contest

  • A winner of Geist Sentence Invitational

  • One of three Canadian bilingual jurors to judge the Manitoba Writers' Guild Lansdowne Poetry Prize / Prix Lansdowne de poésie (Manitoba's largest poetry prize) in conjunction with the Manitoba Book Awards

  • Formerly one of three Canadian judges to adjudicate The League of Canadian Poets Poetic License Contest for Youth

  • Western Canadian Representative (one of three judges Canada-wide) to adjudicate the Ford & Jaguar Automotive Journalist of the Year Awards for two years




"Fern G. Z. Carr's poems stand out in terms of imagery and creativity but even more so for her ability to elicit strong emotion from the reader.  Poetry often does this, but Ms. Carr takes it to the next level - the poems of hers that I read left me angry, saddened, and horrified.  But countering that were several poems that invoked whimsy and softness and delight.  It's truly a skilled poet who can explore the breadth of emotions while going as deep as she goes.  I am thrilled to be able to include her work in A Quiet Shelter There."  Gerri Leen ~ Guest Editor, Hadley Rille Books     


"By turns elegant and whimsical, Fern G. Z. Carr creates original forms for her work that are organic to the poems, as well as precise, imaginative, and intriguing. She makes compelling poetry out of scientific fact, and we've been very pleased to include her voice multiple times in Verse Wisconsin."  Wendy Vardaman ~ Co-editor, Verse Wisconsin


"Being multilingual, Carr has a unique voice that she takes full advantage of.  She has an incredible message to deliver to her audience and the structure with which she delivers it is just as incredible."  Dr. Stacia Neeley ~ Editor, Aries (Texas Wesleyan University)


"Fern G. Z. Carr's poem 'Charm (a.k.a. Putting a Spin on Things)', one of the quark-named poems included in our joint issue on literature and science, stood out for its playful tone, its language, and the freshness of approach.  We liked that it made more than coincidental use of the particle fictions theme, though you don't have to fully understand the science to enjoy the poem."  Kim Jernigan (The New Quarterly) & Anita Lahey (Arc Poetry Magazine) ~ Co-editors, The QuArc Issue


"If Carr were not a poet, I imagine that she might be a potter, taking dull clumps of ordinary clay and transforming them into fascinating, polished and quirky pieces of art.  She certainly achieves a similar effect with language.  Carr clearly revels in the possibilities of language and through her poems, this joy becomes contagious.  Indeed, Carr's poetry has the delightful ability to take that which is familiar - even mundane - and refract that knowledge in wonderfully strange ways.  Innovative, yet free of pretensions, Carr's unique use of language and form invites us to enter a wonderland of the everyday in which we discover ourselves surrounded by more: more beauty, more charm and more humour."  Dr. Anne-Marie Lee-Loy ~ Editor, White Wall Review (Ryerson University)


"Fern G. Z. Carr is certainly a talented sculptor of words who has a way of moving the reader effectively.  Her pieces are poetic and lovely – some humourous, some clever compilations of contrast and some wonderfully haunting and sensual in their darkness.  In short, some great poetry."  Mark Leslie Lefebvre ~ Author, Editor and Bookseller


"What strikes me the most about Ms. Carr's craft is that as a translator of her own poems - as well as others' - she manages this delicate task with ease and is able to distil this almost-psychic ability in a cogent manner. Translating is extremely demanding yet Fern G. Z. Carr is a powerful symmetrist.  The poems I had the opportunity to read had a strange effect on me:  Carr allows you to see in the dark and experience the unbelievable. She has always transported me, as she will transport you, to new depths of thought and emotion with her powerful style."  Walter Ruhlmann ~ Translator, Writer, Publisher and Editor mgversion2>datura


"Through the poems of Fern G. Z. Carr, I experience a voice in which disparate elements are musically reconciled.  I experience the loveliness of a Chinese garden coupled compassionately with a skid-row street.  I witness the spirituality of the dawn combined with the animal joy of the cat.  I am drawn into the Whitman-esque union of infinite space and nearby grass.  Hers is a poetry of searching elevation and familiar concreteness."  William Reyer, Professor of English and Department Chair - Heidelberg University, Tiffin, Ohio and State Contest Chair, Ohio Poetry Day







Sample Poems



Sample Translation



Locations Published



Alberta: Edmonton   British Columbia: Kelowna, Lantzville, Okanagan Falls, Penticton, Richmond, Vancouver   Manitoba: Miami, Winnipeg   New Brunswick: Fredericton   Newfoundland: Moreton's Harbour   Ontario: Cobalt, Kingston, London, New Liskeard, Ottawa, Tecumseh, Toronto, Waterloo, Windsor   Québec: Montréal   Saskatchewan: Battleford, Regina, Swift Current 



Alabama: Birmingham   Alaska: Anchorage   Arizona: Tuscon   Arkansas: Conway   California: Berkeley, Del Mar, Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Pasadena, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Francisco, San Jose, San Pedro   Colorado: Boulder, Denver, Wheat Ridge   Connecticut: New Haven   Florida: Daytona Beach, Tampa   Illinois: Champaign   Indiana: Indianapolis, Muncie  Iowa: Shellsburg   Kansas: Overland Park   Kentucky: Louisville   Louisiana: Metairie   Maine: Portland  Massachusetts: Boston, Somerville, Worcester   Michigan: Lansing   Minnesota: Perham, St. Paul   Nevada: Las Vegas   New Hampshire: Keene   New Jersey: Passaic, Princeton   New Mexico: Albuquerque   New York: Franklin Square (Long Island), Jamaica, Mt. Hope, Mt. Marion, New York City, Northport (Long Island), Oakdale (Long Island)   North Carolina: Asheville   North Dakota: Fargo   Ohio: Tiffin   Oregon: Beaverton, Grants Pass, Portland   Rhode Island: Newport   South Carolina: Charleston   South Dakota: Brookings  Texas: Abilene, Fort Worth, Waco   Virgina: Centreville, Norfolk   Washington: Lacey, Seattle   West Virginia: Morgantown   Wisconsin: Madison  


Outside Canada and the USA

Austria: Puchberg   Australia: Geelong - Victoria, Newcastle - New South Wales, Perth - Western Australia, West Hoxton - New South Wales   China: Chengdu - Sichuan, Hong Kong   Cyprus: Nicosia   England: Bicester, Cambs, Leeds, Manchester, Winchcombe   Finland: Vantaa   France: Le Reposoir - Haute-Savoie, Nantes, Paris, Toulouse   Holland: Amsterdam   India: Anupshahr - Uttar Pradesh, Calcutta - West Bengal, Chandigarh - Punjab and Haryana States, New Delhi - National Capital Territory of Delhi, Pimpri - Maharashtra   Ireland: Riverside - County Sligo   Israel: Jerusalem, Metulla   Italy: Agliè, Turin   Mauritius: Quatre Bornes   Mayotte Island (Mozambique Channel): Mamoudzou   Mexico: San Miguel de Allende   Nepal: Kathmandu   New Zealand: Auckland   Nigeria: Lagos   Peru: Lima   Philippines: Taguig City   Romania: Constanta   Scotland: Rothesay   Seychelles: Victoria   Singapore: Singapore   South Africa: Cape Town, Pretoria   Spain: Madrid   Sweden: Gothenburg   Thailand: Banglamung   United Arab Emirates: Dubai   Wales: Penyrheol - Caerphilly



Carr's haiku is currently orbiting the planet Mars aboard NASA's MAVEN spacecraft.




Dear Readers,

On a personal note, I would like to touch upon my philosophy of poetry.  It would be presumptuous to attempt to define the essence of this craft.  Poetry is so inherently subjective - one poem can have a profound impact on someone whereas another person might not even bother to finish reading the same piece.

In terms of my work, the poems I write often take on a life of their own.  Although I initially focus on particular topics or ideas, my poems sometimes decide to carry me off in a completely different direction.  That is perfectly fine. I just put myself in the hands of my little abductors and let them take me where they will.  I always fancy the literary ride.

I also enjoy composing poetry in different languages and then translating my poems into English.  I sometimes do the reverse, writing the English version first and then translating it into the foreign language of choice.  Both scenarios are different since every language offers its own rhythms and cadences which bring a certain musicality to the translation.

When I translate the work of other poets, I am always very attentive to nuances of meaning.  One of the advantages of translating my own work though, is that I know exactly what I intended.  This of course is subject to the interpretation of others.  Readers often come up with wonderful analyses that surprise and delight me.

I treasure my collection of poems written by other poets.  They span many eras and traverse many stylistic trends.  I have selected only the poems which affect me deeply - the pieces that linger in my consciousness long after I have finished reading them.  These poems give me pause to reflect upon the poet's philosophy, ingenuity and mastery of his craft.  Ideally, that is what I hope to achieve with my work.  If I am able to have that kind of effect on even one of my readers, then I will have accomplished what I have set out to do.


May your lives shine with poetry,




Please feel free to e-mail Fern with your comments and questions.  Poetry readings can also be booked via this link:


Contact Fern G. Z. Carr


View Fern G. Z. Carr's profile on LinkedIn

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