Billy the Kid

Starting work on a personal project, illustrations of Borges’s A Universal History of Infamy. Here is a preliminary rough for the story ‘The Disinterested Killer, Bill Harrigan’, which will be finished in drypoint and hand coloured.

billy the kid

‘The night of the twenty-fifth of July 1880, Billy the Kid came galloping on his piebald down the main, or only, street of Fort Sumner. The heat was oppressive and the lamps had not been lighted; Sheriff Garrett, seated on a porch on a rocking chair, drew his revolver and sent a bullet through the Kid’s belly. The horse kept on; the rider tumbled into the dust of the road. Garrett got off a second shot. The townspeople (knowing the wounded man was Billy the Kid) locked their window shutters tight. The agony was long and blasphemous. In the morning, the sun by then high overhead, the began drawing near, and they disarmed him. The man was gone. They could see in his face that used-up look of the dead.

He was shaved, sheathed in ready-made clothes, and displayed to awe and ridicule in the window of Fort Sumner’s biggest store. Men on horseback and in the buckboards gathered for miles and miles around.’ (Borges, ‘The Disinterested Killer, Bill Harrigan’).

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