Tuesday, February 02, 2010

An Interview on the Occasion of James Dickey's Birthday

Scott Bowen posted this interesting little documentary on his blog along with an e-mail interview he did with Christopher Dickey:

For James Dickey: A birthday interview with his son, Christopher Dickey

The image of American poet James Dickey (1923-...

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Poet, novelist, and critic James Lafayette Dickey was born today, February 2, in 1923. He died 13 years ago, on January 19, 1997, at the age of 74.

In his time, he wrote a ton of magnificent poetry unlike anything his contemporaries produced, and three novels. He won the National Book Award in 1965 for his book of poems, Buckdancer’s Choice, and served as the Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 1966 to 1968.

I had the great good fortune to have studied with Dickey while in graduate school, and benefitted from his mentorship and friendship. I remember him joking at one of his Groundhog Day birthday parties, “The fox knows many things, but the groundhog knows one really big thing,” a quip I heard him repeat a few other times, as he was wont to retell his favorite notions.

Much of Dickey’s poetry has deep connections to nature, and examines thoroughly the exalting and conflicted relationship humans have with nature as they find it, and with their own origins in the natural world.

On what would have been James Dickey’s 87th birthday, I caught up with his eldest son, Christopher Dickey, the Paris Bureau Chief and Middle East Editor for Newsweek magazine, to ask some questions via e-mail about his father’s work, and about his own. ... http://trueslant.com/scottbowen/2010/02/02/for-james-dickey-a-birthday-interview-with-his-son-christopher-dickey/

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