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Rio, August 27th, 1963

Dear May:

I gave Betty Theodorides the samba record for you, and put a note in it—thought she was mailing it airmail. However–she decided to take it with her on the boat–so you’ll be hearing from her on the telephone around the the 20th of September, I think —whenever the S S Brazil gets in to to New York. It sailed yesterday, but goes first to Buenos Aires, back here again, etc. The trouble is that now I can’t remember what I’ve written you and what I haven’t!–I think I did write you about / Lota’s having been in the hospital, etc. –and the note with the record wasn’t news, just information about the samba–

Lota is recovering and went back to work two weeks ago–much too soon. But there was a big show at the Museum of Modern Art here–models, airplane photographs, etc., of all her "job"–It opened last week and was a huge success– almost 5,000 people– the most attendance by far they’ve ever had. So it does look as though all her work had not been in vain and that some of the public is with her – Then early Sunday morning she and the Governor opened, of all things, the two big circles–with grass, benches, etc–for model–aireoplane flying called aereo modelismo

I’ll try spelling all ways–
here (In his speech Lacerda said that he’s only learned how to pronounce it himself the day before.) That too was a great success, to judge by the crowds.– 333 and I sat on the platform–a very modest rather shaky one–just for fun, too Lota had to cut a ribbon, and receive sheaves of roses, etc–and we watched the whole thing over again on T V Monday night. Model airplanes trailing banners, and one small rocket were launched and wooshed around at 100 kilometers an hour, and the ice cream and balloon and popcorn men did a good business– Little did I ever dream– Well–I’d rather see model planes than the real thing gyrating overhead– but one leads to the other class no doubt–

Will you send me a copy of your Spoon River Anthology? Among the cast–off magazines Betty T left is a Harper’s Bazaar – with the D Thomas piece about Masters, mentioning your selection. (The rest of the magazine seems to prove that the thing these days is too look like a thus–weird isn’t it.) I didn’t think Masters had been quite so neglected as they seem to think–seems to me he was always popping up– I’d love to see what you say–

Perh ap pas you are off at Wellfleet now ? –looking at the same ocean. I am– hope you have a nice vacation there– where do you stay?

Oh–I have three new birds–Betty T had about 20 and gave them all away except one lonely little yellow & green creature she handed to me at the last minute — It turns out to be a female wild canary and I think I’ll have to get it a husband. Then I couldn’t resist a pair of Bica Lacquas — (Lacquer beaks–or maybe sealing–wax beaks the word’s the same ) — I wish I could send you a pair and I wonder if they import them. They’re the most adorable bird I know–about 3" long, including the tail — extremely delicate; bright red bills and narrow bright red masks. The male has a sort of mandarin drooping moustache

one
black– line mark otherwise they’re just alike. They’re tiny, but plump – and the feathers are incredibly beautiful, shading from brown and gray on top to almost pale beige, white, and a rose red spot on the belly — but all this in almost invisible ripples of color mixed with white–wave ripples, just like sand ripples on a sand flat after the tid has gone outall so fine I have to put on my reading glasses to appreciate it properly. They’re almost as affectionate as love–birds, and t hey have a nest – smaller than a fist with a doorway in the side, that and they both get in to sleep. The egg is about as big as a baked bean rarely hatched in captivity–but I’m hoping– From the front they look like a pair of half–ripe strawberries – You’d like them! But now I have two unwed female canaries —must find them husbands in order to have a little song around here– We’re all silent together [depressed]

Much love,
Elizabeth.
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