Born on August 20, 1975 in Portland, Oregon, Matthew Dickman was raised by his mother in the suburb of Lents. After studying at the University of Oregon, he earned an MFA from the University of Texas at Austin's Michener Center.
Dickman's first full-length collection, All American Poem, won the 2008 American Poetry Review/Honickman First Book Prize in Poetry. He is also the author of two chapbooks: Amigos (Q Ave. Press, 2007), and Something About a Black Scarf (Azul Press, 2008). His second collection is forthcoming from W.W. Norton & Co. in 2012.
Dickman's style, as exemplified in All-American Poem, was noted in the Los Angeles Times:
Dickman crystallizes and celebrates human contact, reminding us...that our best memories, those most worth holding on to, those that might save us, will be memories of love...The background, then, is a downbeat America resolutely of the moment; the style, though, looks back to the singing free verse of Walt Whitman and Frank O'Hara.
Dickman's awards include the May Sarton Award from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Kate Tufts Award from Claremont College, the 2009 Oregon Book Award, and two fellowships from Literary Arts of Oregon. He has also received residencies and fellowships from the Michener Center for Writers, The Vermont Studio Center, The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and The Lannan Foundation.
In addition to writing, Dickman serves as Associate Editor for Tin House magazine. He also appeared in the 2002 film Minority Report alongside his twin brother, poet Michael Dickman. In his free time, he works in a bakery, where he can "shape five baguettes in under three minutes."