Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast » Blog Archive » 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #64: Featuring Barry Moser

Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast Blog Archive 7 Imps Edited to add on Sunday night: I say, since folks were so busy today on this holiday weekend, that we leave this post up for a bit longer. If you are so inclined, feel free to leave your kicks on Monday, too (which you’re always welcome to do anyway)! Happy Memorial Day to all . . .

Edited to add on Monday: For a beautiful Memorial Day “Dedication,” go read Sara’s original poem.

Jules: Well, howdy, friends. Put on your best bib and tucker, ’cause we’ve got art work from one ace-high illustrator this week, the one and only Barry Moser, whose woodblock-
engraving illustrations in last year’s Cowboy Stories (Chronicle Books; September 2007) are being featured today. I’ve had this book for a while and have been slowly enjoying it, particularly Moser’s highly dramatic, black-and-white illustrations — all line and shadow and heroism and wonder. Yes, this is a round-up of tales of the quintessential American icon, the cowboy — from authors such as Louis L’Amour, Annie Proulx, Dorothy M. Johnson, Elmore Leonard, and much more.

And one reason I’m sharing these images this week is that my father-in-law, a true cowboy at heart, had a bit of a spill this week — fell off a horse and broke some ribs. He’s going to be okay, but these images are for him and all the other cowboys and cowgirls who get right back up and get back on their horses—in more ways than one—after they’ve been thrown off.

Since I’m not done reading the book yet and if, for that reason, you won’t trust my opinion on how good this book is, take this excerpt from VOYA‘s review: “Page after page, cowboy after cowboy, the stories unfold like a bedroll on the Texas panhandle. This collection is an American cultural treasure.” It really is good stuff. The above illustration is from “A Buffalo Hunt,” a short autobiographical account offered up by legendary African American cowboy, Nat Love. He writes about a buffalo hunt (don’t fret, animal lovers. He writes, “it would have been an easy task to shoot them but that was not our idea of sport”), describing a “magnificent bull buffalo,” who proved to be too much for him and his fellow ropers.

The last two illustrations come from Stephen Crane’s “Twelve O’Clock” and E.C. “Teddy Blue” Abbott’s “Shallow Graves.”

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Illustrations from COWBOY STORIES. Copyright © 2007. Illustration © 2007 by Barry Moser. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Chronicle Books. All rights reserved.

Many thanks to the publisher for sharing these images. They say Barry Moser does nary an interview, which bums me out, ’cause I’d love to Q & A with him (but I know interviews aren’t for everyone). And, hey, I just saw this and was surprised to read he was born in Chattanooga. Who knew? But aren’t these images great? It really is a handsome book, and there’s even this from ’06, which I’ve never seen. Anyway, before you ride off into the sunset today, we hope you’ll leave your kicks. We had some ourselves this week . . .

Oh, as a reminder, our weekly 7 Kicks list is the meeting ground for listing Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week—whether book-related or not—that happened to you, as well as a place to feature illustrators like Barry. You—yes, you reading now—are more than welcome to leave your kicks from the week, whether you’ve ever done so before or not.

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* * * eisha’s kicks * * *

1* THE SUN IS OUT! IT’S STILL UP THERE! Seriously, this is my first spring in Ithaca, and I have no idea if this is normal, but before Friday I hadn’t seen sunshine since April. It’s been about 50 degrees every day since April too, and the gray skies and constant threat of drizzly rain was getting boring.

Dump & Run is a national organization - click & see.2* Since we moved, we’ve been eyeballing certain pieces of furniture and various household items that we really don’t need or want anymore (Why do we have two toasters?), but now that we’ve downsized to one (tiny) car it’s kind of a hassle to take them to, say, the Salvation Army. Luckily, I found out about Cornell’s Dump & Run program, where through the month of May they set up donation sites and also perform pick-ups of whatever the students are leaving behind when they move out. Then, in the fall, they have a big sale (with new students presumably buying all the old student’s stuff) and donate the proceeds to local charities. So, I got them to come and take all our leftovers this week. Woo! Looky! I can actually see patches of bare floor!

3* I’ve been asked to stay on full-time at my current temp job for a couple more weeks at least.

4* I talked to a professor about possibly-maybe cataloging and organizing his department’s collection of books later this summer.

5* One of the departments I’ve temped for invited me to their end-of-year luncheon at a yummy French restauraunt, Dijon. Omigod, people, the frites! THE FRITES!!!

I totally stole this picture from someone else’s Flickr file, but it’s the same frites from the same restaurant. Click the photo to see the source.


7* On the ride over to the restaurant, I finally heard Duffy singing “Mercy.” Holy crap, how have I lived this long without her? Shall we just take a little dance break now? Yes, I think we shall:

I’m writing this early ’cause I’m heading out to the Berks this weekend to see the latest show my husband designed (and to escape Cornell’s graduation). Happy Memorial Day!

* * * Jules’ kicks * * *

1). Seeing one of my best friends and her family, who all had to move away to West Virginia recently. She came to town this weekend, all last-minute, and surprised me. We met up at the Tennessee Renaissance Festival. The Festival was fun, too, but four-year-olds in the hot sun, moping around asking repeatedly for ice cream and sitting way too far away from the jousting competition to even be able to see and whining instead is, um, not.

2). BUT . . . I did sign said four-year-old up for an art class this summer. A parent/child, summer sampler art class. Here! We get to play with paint and paper and clay and crayons—and more—for one week. WOOT! We’re gonna have so much fun!

bear's picture13). Speaking of art . . . Daniel Pinkwater’s Bear’s Picture with illustrations by D.B. Johnson. I love me some D.B. Johnson art work, and then this story (which is from ’72, I believe, but has been re-illustrated)…well, it’s kickin’, my friends. It’s all about how just because you don’t see something in another person’s piece of art work doesn’t mean there isn’t something there. Lots of adults need to read this one, I think. So great. Anyone else read this? Could there have been a more perfect choice for illustrator (or re-illustrator, as the case may be).

4). The very fun splash pad/water park very close to us opened for the summer and we took a trip with the neighbor, whom I enjoy talking to, and her devastatingly cute kids.

5). Even more people came along this week at 7-Imp to continue discussing the crunchily thought-provoking E. Lockhart book with us — feminism, gender politics, class privileges, and more. Come on, you know you wanna join the conversation, too. Crunchy, juicy good stuff. These impassioned book discussions are the best part of blogging about books.

6). I meant to post about this last week: Jenny at the blog Red Hot Eyebrows totally went through the post Adrienne and I did about Slightly Demented Picture Books and decided to read all the titles! Even the ones left in comments by our readers. Here’s her post. How cool is that?

7). It’s Memorial Day weekend, and one thing it makes me think of is the very bad horror movie my friends in high school (including my brother) and I made on prom night when I was a junior (I think it was). Yup, we purposely ditched prom to make a painfully bad, low-budget, B-flick. I’m sure it’s only funny to us. It took us hours to build the costume for the “monster,” and the entire movie is, like, five minutes? We named it “Memorial Day,” since many horror movies are holiday-related (Halloween, Friday the 13th….uh, well, maybe not so many), and we thought that’d be hysterically funny. We were easily amused. But anyway, Tracy, this weekend is for you!

7½): Two words: Polly. Dunbar.

BONUS: This is a kick for all of us in the kidlitosphere who love Kelly!

ANOTHER BONUS: I have the perfect name for Susan’s next chicken. My daughters and I read “The Ugly Duckling” by Andersen this week (the annotated original — from here), and there’s a hen in there named Chickabiddy Shortlegs. It made us laugh out loud and brought Susan’s fowl to mind.

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1690943913 530 Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast Blog Archive 7 ImpsAnd here are two quick kidlitosphere-related announcements:

** The Cybils needs your help. Go read — and assist if you can.

** And any illustrators reading, by chance, might want to take note of this announcement from over at Just One More Book!! (Happy anniversary in advance to them!)

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What are your kicks this week? Is anyone even around this holiday weekend? We hope so . . .

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