The One Voice of James Dickey: His Letters and Life 1942 - 1969. It's somewhat interesting to get a peek at a relationship that, if it had gone a certain way, could have negated my very existence.
Some excerpts from the book:
I meet [sic] the swellest girl in Nashville. She is wonderful. I like her better than anyone I ever went with, including Peg Roney and Gayle.
There is an awfully nice girl in Nashville named Jane Davis who seems to be quite taken with me. In all her letters she is always talking about marriage. She is full of ideas about houses and apartments and cooking and learning to "do things together" and all in all paints an enticing picture of connubial bliss. I would sure like to have one like that around. She would really go all-out for her husband; but I'm afraid I'm just not the domestic type. She is dying to get married. I know you'd like her. However I can't forget that freckled slant-eyed, honey-haired vixen I've been sweating out all these years.
Well, all I can say is thank goodness for that "freckled slant-eyed, honey-haired vixen." It was my grandfather who ultimately married the "swellest girl in Nashville" and the rest is, well, the rest leads to me. My fourth child has a due date of April 15, 2009. My grandfather, William Samuel Rickman, and his wife Jane had four children and his birthday was April 15, 1923. In tribute to him, we decided on Samuel for our baby's name if he was a boy. The baby, however, decided to be a girl so we're naming her Samantha Jane. Samantha as a variation of Samuel and Jane in tribute to my grandmother, Jane Davis Rickman.
My thanks to both my mom and my cousin who found the book and its references to my grandmother.