The natural world provides inspiration and endless symbolic meanings. There are moments in the day when the falling of a leaf, or a tree before me glows with its unique markings, colors and rhythm. At other moments a memory of a place, person or experience reveals itself. It is those moments that seem to infuse my work and bring a spiritual meaning to the process.
Allowing the process to unfold, I work intuitively, as I combine mediums. Natural materials, fiber, photographs and words merge as new ideas blossom into a new form. The desire to explore, create and enter a mysterious place of possibility is the motivation for each new piece.
It is through public installations, teaching and writing that I share my passion, address social, political, environmental and aesthetic concerns. It is my desire to affect change in positive ways.
Ghosts Rip Free, by Norma Bradley, is such a lovingly imagined book. It’s no accident that Bradley, in addition to being a virtuoso poet, is a virtuoso quilter. She writes exquisitely about, and out of, memory: the often-precarious art of arranging, then stitching together, remnants, swatches, ephemera, what’s been lost or forgotten, to create a stunning composite cosmos that the fragments lack – a pattern wrought of improvisation and intuition at once. What’s more, these poems, like a quilt, function as a genealogy, the plat and locus of the heart – over time, terrain, and ancestral devotion. Bradley has fashioned in this volume a praise-song to family and the willed act of memory, joined to language, that resurrects it.
Joseph Bathanti, North Carolina Poet Laureate (2012-14) & author of Land of Amnesia
To purchase Norma's chapbook please contact her at