Salvatore “Sal” Ala is a respected Canadian poet born in 1959 to Sicilian immigrants in Windsor, Ontario. As a student at the University of Windsor, Ala studied literature and philosophy and after graduation worked a wide variety of jobs including: factory worker, debt collector and night clerk. A copy of The Complete Poems of Keats and Shelley found in a thrift store nightstand at the age of twenty sparked Ala’s interest in poetry and it was not long after that he began to write his own poems. Ala’s life and work experiences have often informed his poetry and many have appeared as the subject of his works such as , “The Debt Collector”. His father, Frank Ala, was a popular Windsor barber and is also a subject of a number of Ala’s poems including, “Fishing with My Father” and “The Barber Has No Place to Cry”.
To date, Ala has published 5 collections of poetry including: The Clay Maker and Straight Razor and Other Poems. His work has also been featured in a number of literary journals including The Windsor Review, Generation, Borderlines Two and Zygote. Famed Windsor author Alistar MacLeod wrote of Ala’s work in his book, The Claymaker, “They are poems of integrity and clarity, and many of them possess a startling beauty.” Salvatore Ala lives with his wife and children in Windsor, Ontario.
MARTY GERVAIS MY, T. 2. (1998, Sep 04). Barber’s son listened, learned. The Windsor Star Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/254282508?accountid=31270
Valle, Madelyn Della, and Caterina Lopez. Impronte: Italian Imprints in Windsor. Windsor, Ont.: Walkerville, 2009. Print.