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Oh, a first-rate gentleman. First of all, he married
Thomas Mann's daughter just to get her out of Germany.
That's the kind of fellow he is. I don't think that this
was a marriage that meant very much to either of them
emotionally. I don't think that Auden's interests lie in
He's very amusing. I remember one incredible night
when Auden established headquarters in Brooklyn Heights in
a private house with Carson McCullers and a young author
named Davis I think, who wrote a Harper Prize novel. He's
dead now and so's Carson McCullers. But this unnatural
trio established headquarters in a private house overlooking
lower New York harbor; and they were joined for a while by
none other than Gypsy Rose Lee, who came to live with them.
Gypsy is a very smart girl, you know. She's very smart and
very funny. She had a pet monkey which she insisted on
bringing into the entourage. The climax came when the pet
monkey bit Auden in the ass. She and the monkey were banished.
Linscott, who was one of our editors--Robert Linscott,
who came down from Houghten-Mifflin--and Phyllis my wife and
I went over to a party there one night. I'll never forget
this party because although they had been living there for
about four months, the rugs were still folded up with cords
around each. They had never bothered to unwrap the rugs.
God knows where they got the rugs, but they were all in a
pile in the corner. The furniture was nondescript. Most of
it had never been put in place. They were living there
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