Dear Friend:—

Your visit had the usual good effect. I was doubly a poet yesterday, & finally wrought lines fairly besieged me. I am going to have a wonderful time in describing that superb body of [Fink?]. There is something almost intoxicating about the thought of capturing all those lines about it that are after me yet today. You are always an instrument in time when I see you, & that augments whatever music is in me.

After you left, I began really to think about Mrs. Sheldon's letter. I couldn't quite see all around it while you were here. And it has come to seem to me that I ought not to accept the $15 offer for an appearance before the Thursday Lecture Circle. The Woman's Club might be all right; would be so, if the women could take me seriously enough to pay as others have & will pay. You see, Doctor, the fact is that to those women I am a sort of local celebrity trying to get on. But I am decidedly not that. Perhaps it would be better to give the women time to learn something about modern American poetry before I go to them. I dislike patronage based on a poor understanding, as this is likely to be.

Don't you think it would be better to save Lincoln for a better opportunity if the Woman's Club doesn't want me enough to pay me?

You are my friend — one of my very best friends — and you will not see in this anything even remotely resembling a lack of appreciation for your efforts. You must remember that my home state, until you came, did absolutely nothing for me. London & New York & Chicago & San Francisco praised me long before Nebraska knew of my existence. They must want me, or I must not go to them.

I mentioned Mrs. Borghum of Omaha as the woman who could & would handle a reading in Omaha, — Mrs. August Borghum. I have misplaced her address, but the family is well known there. I would like to go to Omaha.

Isn't it fine weather? I begin to feel a bit like "April Theology".

Yours always,


I enclose Mrs. Sheldon's letter, thinking that perhaps I ought not answer it under the circumstances.

Did I tell you that the Fortnightly Club of Chicago plans to have me there during the coming winter?
BANCROFT [?]May 16 1916 NEB.
Dr. J. T. House, Wayne, Nebraska