March 22, 1952
Father V.J. Guinan, C.S.B.
University of St. Thomas
Houston 6, Texas
My dear Father:
Your kind letter brought back vivid memories of my visit to Houston several years ago. It was a delightful journey for me in that I made real friends among the staff of St. Thomas. All of you set out to make things comfortable for me and hospitable to the last degree. It will be a pleasure to renew the friendships.
I sent off a telegram of acceptance yesterday, but there is just one qualification which I discussed with Father McCorkell. I like giving lectures, but Floor discussion is a bit uncongenial, partly because an ear infection this winter has made me slightly deaf, and partly because controversy from the Floor has always been a nervous exaction for me. I don't mind small groups where there is a sit-around intimacy and informality and everyone is at ease. Would Mr Tatton consent to this limitation?
In addition to my main lecture, I could substitute for any prospective participant who for some reason or other couldn't make the Conference. Or I could do my part in filling gaps with poetry-readings.
As for Houston, I should gladly place myself at your disposal for as many 'talks' and lecture-recitals as desired, inside or outside your city, the same as on the previous trip. The dates mentioned suit me admirably. I would go by train arriving in Houston Monday 26th or Tuesday, whatever is convenient to you.
I remember going with Father Dwyer and Father McCorkell to Galveston and to some other town where I spoke to the Seminarians for Monsignor (?) and also to the party at the house of the Decorator where I read for a few minutes. It was all most pleasant for me.
Here is a list of subjects to choose from:
I shall be glad to hear from you and accept any suggestions. By the way, do I need to bring a dinner jacket with black tie? I have a dark-business suit (light in weight) and with white soft shirt. That's what I wore last time.
With kind personal regards,
Sorry I cannot type, as I have a broken shoulder from a fall. It is getting better.