Dear Lucile:

I was so glad to hear from you again and to know that you were back at home getting well. I did worry about you, and I still want to feel sure that you are all right.

It's good that Stanley and Phyllis sent you clippings & reports of the unveiling in Lincoln on Dec. 7. It's hard to communicate the mood of the whole affair and the details. You got much of it, evidently, when you noted that the articles "almost sing". That's the most notable thing to me. The Senate chamber was full of that feeling during the ceremony & while I was talking. Then came the luncheon with about 200 guests from all over the state, and that was even more so because it was more intimate. I think you know I read the Vision of Wovoka after my little speech. It did go over and have you a copy of my remarks? Dr. Winkleman was especially impressed with the talk - along with others.

Your tribute to Mona was [?], and many spoke of it. I was so glad you did that, and so were the girls. If you have my talk you'll know how I felt about Mona's place in the affair.

I must send you some photos and several letters of regret. Truman said "I'm just as sorry as I can be" that he couldn't be present. He was in Los Angeles that day. Mari Sandoz wrote simply, most generously & beautifully. She's a good girl as well as a heluva good writer.

The Governor, Frank Morrison, is a huge, loveable man. He was so dear with me and the others, especially the children. When he held my hand, it was like a bird in a big warm nest!

People I hadn't seen for from 25 to 40 years were at the luncheon. One chap told me of a prairie chicken hunt we had together in the sandhills of Nebraska 40 some years ago. According to his story, I took his 20 guage ​ shot-gun & brought down a flying chicken at an incredible distance! I have no such memory!

I told you about the high school programs and the responses This was the 8th of December. Then that afternoon I recorded (on tape) for three hours (about) giving reminiscences of old-timers, white and Indian, that I've known. Dr. Danker, the archivist, did the recording, and Phyllis says he played it all over & is delighted. They will save the tape, altho' they first planned merely to make a typed transcript.

There is a Dr. Ghose here, a Hindu visiting professor from Calcutta University, who offices next to me, & we we've become friends. He has read Poetic Values & loves it. Also, he was with a group of graduate students who had me out to read lyrics about ten days ago. The reading excited him him, and he has written an article about my lyrics & my reading for an Indian magazine. Also, he has written two articles on Poetic Values for another magazine. He has a plan for getting me over to India for six months to lecture at colleges & universities. He says six lectures would be enough. This may (or may not) work out. Either way is good.

Sweet, brood-browed Perky! Of course, most certainly, she has been deeply concerned over the mysterious trouble woolsing her precious lady. If you could only be inside her head for a day! She is good and has a certain unconcious wisdom ("Wise the way a good horse is without a thought of wisdom"?)

The horse people are sweet too. And Yo-Yo and Lassie and Karl ([?] big German shepherd too). My mare, Hurrying Angel, is such a sweet, girlish person. She is shy but O how she loves to have me hold her muzzle in my two hands & kiss her on the soft nose. All the horses like to see me come for a visit.

Here's affection for Stewart & Bower and soft pettings for Perky. I'm so glad you are recuperating. Have you resumed tatting? That will be a good sign - when you begin again!!

I'm excited about the talk about my stuff in the Browning Room! Is that room a cultural sanctum sanctorum? It's damned nice of them to let a lady speak there! I wish I could sneak in & hear you! I know you will do a beautiful job; and do let me know all about it.

I didn't tell you how we all got to Lincoln for the ceremony. Alice dr Hilda drove her Edsel station wagon and took her three youngsters as well as Alice & her two youngsters I flew up, intending to fly back also. I think I told you of my slow return because of the snowstorm.

The girls & Robin stayed at a swell motel at the edge of the city*. I stayed at Winkelmans.

Endless affection

John N.

* The trip was my present to them - with Hiddy's cooperation.

John Neihardt Route 7 Columbia, Mo.
COLUMBIA, MO DEC 27 230PM 1961
______ Air Mail


Dr. Lucile Aly 1138 22nd Ave., East, Eugene, Oregon.