Kathleen Fraser was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma on March 22, 1935. She attended Occidental College in Los Angeles before moving to New York City to work as an editorial associate for Mademoiselle magazine. Her first book, Change of Address, was published in 1966. She is the author of numerous poetry collections, and her children's book entitled, Stilts, Somersaults, and Headstands: Game Poems Based on a Painting, was published in 1968. A collection of her essays, Translating the Unspeakable: Poetry and the Innovative Necessity, was published in 2000. From 1972 to 1992, Fraser was a professor of creative writing at San Francisco State University. She also taught at the University of Iowa, Reed College, and in the graduate writing program of California College of the Arts in San Francisco. In the early 1980s, she founded and edited the journal HOW(ever). She died on February 5, 2019 at the age of 83.