Mr. Walter Black Department of English University of Denver University Park Denver, Colorado 80210
Dear Walter:

You gave me great pleasure with your article in the Denver Quarterly. Not only because you spoke well of my book but more because the article was so well written. It is really an excellent job.

I am at present working on the second volume and have, I think, about half of it finished.

Things have been going very well indeed for me and my work. BLACK ELK SPEAKS sold 250,000 in one month this past year, and it's still going strong all over the United States as well as in Europe. WHEN THE TREE FLOWERED has recently appeared in Pocket Book series and Simon and Schuster say they expect it to do as well as BLACK ELK has done.

Walter, it was a joy to hear from you, and I am pleased to hear that you are on the road to a doctorate. I remember when Herman Melville was an obscure author. I was a boy in Wayne, Nebraska, and I borrowed books from the local library which consisted of donations from the natives. I ran across Omoo and Typee and tried to read them. I came to the conclusion that they were not fit to read and I took them back in disgust. That was in the early '90s. No one seemed to have any special respect for the author. I am wondering about such revivals. I believe that is the same kind of people who reject such classics as those who later on boom them. It took 40 years for the public to find out that BLACK ELK was worth reading.

Many, many thanks, old man, for your beautifully written article and your enthusiastic appreciation of the book.

Kindest thoughts from all of us here, your old friend,

John G. Neihardt