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And he said, “No, I'm going to be in charge of it myself.”
That didn't reassure me, because I knew that he wouldn't have
time enough to be in charge of it.
Then Mrs. Johnson spoke to me again, and she
said, “If you have any ideas of things that I should do, tell me,”
and I said, “Oh, fine. I will.” This made me think about what I
would try to do if I were in her position, and I asked for an
appointment for about the middle of November, to talk to her about
possibilities for the inauguration. I have a list of what I
suggested. Have you got that?
Most of these things I think will not have taken
place, but I suggested -- and here's the memo -- that for the
inauguration of President Johnson in 1965 there was a need to make
it memorable, and different from other inaugurations, to mark the
beginning of his Great Society.
I suggested that the Inauguration ceremcies have a
poem written for them, perhaps by Robert Lowell or another
American poet; that a march be especially composed, to be played;
that a song be especially composed by Richard Rogers or Richard
Adler; that a symphony be composed by Copeland or others. I doubt
that any of this has taken place, and I hope that in the next
inauguration of the Johnsons it will be done. There will probably
be more time for preparation.
I suggested that leading photographers and painters
be invited to come to the ceremony and make sketches and take
photographs, and even possibly invite Marc Chagall, as one of the
greatest living painters, to come to the Inauguration.
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