NABOKV-L post 0013726, Sat, 21 Oct 2006 15:31:34 -0700

Torquated pheasant in "Pale Fire"

The "torquated beauty" is the Ring-necked Pheasant. [Phasianus Colchis]("torquated" = ring-necked). The bird itself and its "spurred footprint" are in the attached photos. The game bird, Phasianus Colchis, is rather common in northern part of the U.S. but is Eurasian in origin. The Latin name derives from the river "Phasis" in the (formerly Soviet) state of Georgia in an area Cholchis on the east shore of the Black Sea.

"Pale Fire" lines 20-26:

Whose spurred feet have crossed

From left to right the blank page of the road?

Reading from left to right in winter’s code:

A dot, an arrow pointing back; repeat:

Dot, arrow pointing back... A pheasant’s feet!

Torquated beauty, sublimated grouse,

Finding your China right behind my house.

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