Robert McDowell

Robert McDowell was born in Alhambra, California, and earned a BA from the University of California, Santa Cruz. He went on to earn his MFA from Columbia University.

McDowell is the author of the poetry collections Sweet Wolf: New and Collected Poems (Homestead Lighthouse Press, 2021); The World Next to This One (Salmon Publishing, 2014); On Foot, in Flames (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2002); The Diviners (Story Line Press, 1995); and Quiet Money (Henry Holt & Company, 1987). He is also the author of Poetry as Spiritual Practice (Free Press/Simon & Schuster, 2008), as well as editor of the anthology Poetry After Modernism (Story Line Press, 1998). 

McDowell was selected as a Walter E. Dakin Fellow at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, as well as a Woolrich Fellow at Columbia University. He was a finalist for the Oregon Book Award. 

In 1980, he and Mark Jarman founded The Reaper, a literary periodical that they coedited for nine years. McDowell was also the cofounder and executive director of Story Line Press and taught in Bennington College’s MFA program. In support of the literary arts, he founded the annual Poets’ Prize. Also a freelance writer and editor, McDowell lives in Oregon.