• I stroked his wisps of hair and kissed him on the cheek. Then I took a seat on his shoulder. Together we watched the rain.
  • “Look, there’s Hazel in the pasture,” said Gracie, pointing. Ruby stuck her tongue out at the cow. “Nyyyyaaaa!”
  • I am reliably informed that fish have the best senses of humor in all the animal kingdom. Particularly carp.
  • “I’m a thespian beauty, not a tactician!” “And I’m a lagomorph poet, not a gendarme!”
  • Not one feline in a thousand would let a five-inch-tall, rabbity fellow ride on its back, no matter how nattily dressed the fellow might be.
  • Nothing’s so fine as floppy ears, but jumbled messes just bring jeers.
  • The Odds of Falling Down into the Grime is known to mathematicians and scientists as the O-F-D-G, or oh-fudge, factor.
  • Leaning out over the dash of the elephant saddle, fishtail cutlass at her side, Musetta was at once beautiful and utterly dashing.

Synopsis of The Cozies

WARNING: SPOILER ALERT—the synopsis synopsizes a lot, so stop reading when you’re captured by the mystery and magic to come!
In a lecture hall in the autumn of 1927, the speaker, Thursby—a five-inch-tall figment of the imagination—welcomes the audience. “‘My name is Thursby, and I have been asked to speak to you about the importance of imagination in human affairs. As you may have guessed, imagination is a subject with which I am personally familiar.’ (The speaker pauses for laughter to subside.)”

Despite occasional intrusions by people from the seminar “Green Dreams: Absinthe in Victorian England,” taking place next door in the Matterhorn Room, Thursby is able to relate the main tale, a “story of imagination,” which happened long before in a grand house in the country.

The story begins with toddler Bingo asleep in his crib, and his mother asleep in a chair beside him. The house is quiet on this rainy afternoon, but six figments of the imagination (nursery figments, to be exact, also known as “cozies”) have gathered on the window seat for a theatrical presentation by willowy Musetta. It is, after all, the second Tuesday of the month. And while the cozies’ primary responsibilities are to comfort and entertain children, at the moment all appears to be calm.

The new nanny’s arrival not only disrupts the performance, but also the tranquil existence of the cozies altogether. Subsequent events come to a climax when Bingo is kidnapped by Agnes’s brother, a brutish lout named Tim.

The cozies have serious misgivings about being able to help. “As imaginary beings, of course, our resources are limited.” Despite their misgivings, the cozies launch into a series of adventures for the sake of their little charge, Bingo. Their adventures include, among others, wild rides on Dandie, the family’s dog; Rumple dancing like a ballet dancer across the tops of clouds; flying by moonlight in a miniature dirigible; the Twins making up a hopscotch-like game using the dried remains of squashed cockroaches; and Musetta battling the elements with a cutlass.

The cozies also enlist the help of Pudding, a delusional mouse; Great-grandfather, once known as Augie, a former pirate-fighter; and strange light beings known as the Flying Fays. Everyone contributes to the cataclysmic battle with the brutish lout Tim and his sinister accomplice, Dave. (Sorry, we mean, Maggot. ““I told you, Greg, it’s not ‘Dave’ anymore. It’s ‘Maggot.’ S’what all the boys in the pen called me.”)

Imagination—as the imaginary beings, ironically, discover—turns out to be the key to making a difference in that big, sometimes ugly world “out there.”
The nursery figments’ parlor rests / inside the window seat, / behind dark walnut panels and / small children’s swinging feet.
from Thursbiana, published in France and Quebec as Pensées du Lapin Noir
The Cozies: The Legend of Operation Moonlight has been copyrighted with the United States Copyright Office. The registration number is TXu 1-658-859. All rights are reserved to the copyright holder(s) or their assignees.