Linda Alouise Gregg was born in Suffern, New York, on September 9, 1942, and grew up in Marin County, California. She earned a B.A. (1962) and an M.A. (1972) from San Francisco State University. She married Jack Gilbert, a Pulitzer Prize nominee in poetry, in 1962, and she accompanied him to Greece in 1964. Their troubled marriage and subsequent divorce became the subject of several of her poems. She has taught at several small colleges and large universities, including the University of Iowa, the University of California, Berkeley, and Princeton University. Her 1981 debut book, Too Bright to See, started a period of productivity as she developed her voice focusing on marriage, divorce, and romance.