She graduated from Goucher College, and from Johns Hopkins University with a Ph.D.
She was editor of The American Poetry Review, and she is Advisory Editor of Calyx.She has taught at the University of Chicago, Northwestern University, and Smith College.She is on the faculty of the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College, and lives in Philadelphia.
She has been active in civil rights and peace movements.
"The Girl with Bees in Her Hair", Poetry Foundation
"Reading the Bible Backwards", Poetry Foundation
"Magnificat", Poetry (August 2004)
"Wreck" and "rise above", Poetry (January 2007)
"Bailing Out-A Poem for the 1970s", Poetry Foundation
"Last Self-Portrait, as Rembrandt, for Instance"; "Musical Chairs"; "Unstitch the Universe"; "Guardian"; "Lyrics for a Virtual Folk Song "; "Multiple Image, Retro-Girlhood '40s Style"; "No High Ground"; "Attic Light"; "Winter Conception"; "Daphne Planet as Urn"; "Like Warmed, Vague Stars", The Drunken Boat
Maya (poems), University of Massachusetts Press (Amherst, MA), 1979.
Shekhinah (poems), University of Chicago Press (Chicago, IL), 1984. ISBN 9780226900254
The Girl with Bees in Her Hair (Copper Canyon Press, 2004) ISBN 9781556592034
Tourist in Hell (University of Chicago Press, 2010) ISBN 9780226900322
"Poetry and the Pentagon: Unholy Alliance?", Poetry Foundation, 3.2.06
Gathering the Winds: Visionary Imagination and Radical Transformation of Self and Society, Johns Hopkins University Press (Baltimore, MD), 1975.