Letter to the Editor
Thank you, Joshua Mehigan, for your wonderful, and wonderfully honest, remembrance [“James Dickey,” July/August 2013]. You may be gratified to know that by 1996 my father was not drunk. He quit drinking after 1994 when he was hospitalized with alcoholic hepatitis. But he was dying when he called you, from a progressive fibrosis of the lungs brought on not by smoking — he never smoked — but, apparently, by years inhaling the alcohol fumes that surged up from his gut. If you have occasion to read my memoir, Summer of Deliverance, you will see that James Dickey had always wanted to be a god, and believed he could be one, through poetry. And why not? In his way, I suppose, he was welcoming you to Olympus.