Dear Lucile:

I wish I was looking at you and talking to you instead of writing a letter. How I do wish it!

I'm glad you can regard 17 hours of teaching a week as "fun". That means, among other things, that you are well and happy in the work. Bower is back now, and you'll not be so crowded. Isn't it bully that you can take his classes?! I'd be interested to know what he was doing in N. Y. for three weeks. He does get around, doesn't he? Tell him I said hello.

You ask about the Fulton talk. It was quite worthwhile. The enclosed is from the sponsors, whom you may know. The word "spellbound" was used. I don't like the extreme words, but the audience (small and picked — all teachers) did sit very still and stare at me while I talked.

The Benton-Neihardt bout was a rather happy success, it seems. People liked it, I'm assured, and C. College is happy. (They made so very much of it in their voluminous publicity). I like Benton, and I do believe he likes me. We clicked, and with me he was very kind. (You may recall that he came to Branson to see us once. He said I was then working on Jed Smith). He asked if I'd let him paint my portrait, and of course I'll let him. "Your family won't like it," he said; "but you and I will." He'll do it next fall when he is through with the Truman Library murals. The Missourian report of our affair was either pathetic or comical — I don't know which. Why did they send a green kid to report us? And how do such things get by down there? The Tribune was slightly better, not much. The K. C. Star had a good article, evidently done by an old hand. I'll see if I can get you a copy. At least it does give some idea as to what we said. It did more. People have called Hiddy up & spoken enthusiastically about the affair.

Two C. C. people came out here Monday to bring my first editions that were on display & to give me my honorarium. I signed the check over to the C. C. Alumnae Fund. That did me more good, by far, than the cash could have done. They are a fine outfit over there. The girls are so sweet, bless their young hearts!

You're right about Mrs. Skillings, I know; and I'll do as you say. I've written her about the afghan, of course. Maybe I can find a way later to slip something over on them. That's a sad place, isn't it?

Yes, let's have some double petunias along with the carnations!

Mona must be pleased, if somehow she knows, that you care for the bust she made. It was, I believe, intended to be some distance from the viewer. Mona was not satisified with it — but she never was satisfied with her work.

Mona did believe in you and she was fond of you. I think I told you that she classified you as a "dog", (as distinguished, of course, from the "cat" woman. She liked some cats, but didn't quite trust them!) Mona was definitely canine — a collie, I'd say. (I think you're a collie too!) I've owned two collie dogs, and according to me, it's a high compliment to be likened to that breed. (Nobody has so described me. Samuel Pierson Lockwood once insisted that I was "a cross between a horse and a leopard that the makers of mythology overlooked to their detriment"!)

The bubble figure in my poetry must be of early origin. In various ways, I now realize, it has popped up throughout my stuff. It's in the Wars and the Messiah. I'd never thought of it as your friend does.

Three more weeks, and then the final exams! After the grade cards are in, I'll be off for Lake Cormorant, Miss., to see Alice, Lynn, Erica, Mr. Cook and the sweet horses! I'll be back to harvest my wheat.

I've been reading the dissertation a great deal. It is a fine job!
And then — O my Gosh! — maybe you'ns will arrive here! Just think

I'll be looking at you, and maybe we'll visit Wayne and Bancroft — and K. C. on the way! If you make the Neb. trip, what will you do afterwards? Go home? I'm planning a trip on a coasting vessel to San Diego. So many old friends and some relatives are in So. Calif. Sig and little Maxie are there now — just arrived by car with a small trailer. Old Lady Max is still here, holding down the trailer home. She'll go in a month or so.

The new Hackney boy colt is built thus: Very short from fore to aft, but tall, and his neck mounts like a tower! Oh, I don't see you at all!

Yo-Yo is still my faithful bodyguard. She sends happy woofs and arfs to Stewart.