Where Shadows Will

Where Shadows Will
Selected Poems 1988-2008; City Lights Spotlight No. 1


Norma Cole

Born in Toronto, Canada, Norma Cole received an MA in French from the University of Toronto in 1967, moving to France in time to absorb the revolutionary atmosphere of the May '68 general strike.  Returning to Toronto in the early '70s, she migrated to San Francisco in 1977, where she has lived ever since.  A member of the circle of poets around Robert Duncan in the ’80s, and a fellow traveler of San Francisco’s language poets, Cole is also allied with contemporary French poets like Jacques Roubaud, Claude Royet-Journoud, and Emmanuel Hocquard.  Her translations from the French include Hocquard’s This Story Is Mine (Instress, 1999), Crosscut Universe: Writing on Writing from France (Burning Deck, 2000), Danielle Collobert’s Notebooks 1956-1978 (Litmus, 2003), and Fouad Gabriel Naffah’s The Spirit God and the Properties of Nitrogen (Post-Apollo, 2004).  She has taught at many schools, including the University of San Francisco and San Francisco State.  During winter 2004/05, Cole could be seen inhabiting a 1950s living room as part of the California Historical Society’s Collective Memory installation series.  More recently, she curated a show by Marina Adams at the Cue Arts Foundation in NYC.