Harry Ransom CenterThe University of Texas at Austin

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The Primal Yoke

Watercolor and ink

Tom Lea. Dottie Haskett at Rainbow
Lake, Cloudrock Mountains,
Wyoming, September 3, 1946.
Illustration for The Primal Yoke. 1960.
Watercolor and ink on illustration
15.75 x 8.5"

The King Ranch was published in 1957. After the long-drawn stint of searching, prodding, checking, compiling and stating documented facts pertaining to real persons involved in actual events, it was downright delightful - it was like ringing freedom’s bell - to be a novelist again. . . . The new book was about snow, not sand; about spruce, not mesquite. I began it by inventing, utterly free from documented fact, my own range of high Wyoming mountains. I named them the Cloudrocks. . . . I made them musing on a faraway afternoon with the Sung Master’s Mountains, Kwangsi and Wyoming, infinite circle of sky, feet planted and spirit aspiring. . . . I fastened the view of the Cloudrock Mountains over my drawing table and referred to its topography daily while I wrote The Primal Yoke.

- Tom Lea, A Picture Gallery.


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