McNair to Hall: April 13, 1977


[Click image to view]

Postmarked 13 April 1977

Donald —

Lord, that reading was wonderful! I woke up at
5:30 this morning (an unusual hour for me)
still high on it. I’d like to see that new long poem sometime.
Certain resonant images from it keep coming back
Into my mind — from part four (which I’ve already
mentioned), or from the section about the store
(with its Exxon sign and white clapboards- –
excellent, that tension!). As I told you, I often
have trouble hearing/seeing poems at readings,
and with that poem I need more time…

But thanks for coming to Colby to read your poems.
It was a special night — with the ultimate in
visual aids: Mt. Kearsage itself, just down the

I’m awfully glad you are coming to Colby next year.
I hope you both feel as good to be in the
neighborhood as we all feel having you here.


A note from McNair about this letter: Though I do not mention it in my letter, what woke me at 5:30 a.m., and sent me walking the country roads around my farmhouse in the early light, was the memory of Don dedicating “Names of Horses” to me at his reading…. The “new long poem” I refer to later on is “Stone Walls.”

Read Names of Horses (published version)

Read Stone Walls (published version)