This little brimstone has taken up winter quarters in the greenhouse. I tried putting him out, but when he just sat and stared for a day and a half I brought him back into warmer environs.
Today I liberated the head from it's stem and hung it in the potting shed out of harm's (in the shape of a squirrel) way. With remaining foot and a half of stem it weighs 5 pounds and is about 15 inches in diameter. Quite a beauty. Two more slightly smaller ones are netted for now.
"Day after day, day after day,
We stuck, nor breath nor motion;
As idle as a painted ship
Upon a painted ocean."
And as days of pandemic inspired incarceration have stretched to weary weeks and now six months, I feel ever more kinship with the ancient mariner and more and more strongly that we have indeed, collectively, shot the albatross.
The Richard Burton/John Neville reading of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner happily showed up on ResonanceFM's 'Voices on Record' about a decade ago and is still available as a podcast! I grew up with the Gustave Dore illustrated text - a facsimile edition that my mother gave me for a teen birthday. But scouting around now I see that there is another take by the wonderful Hunt Emerson. In fact I have just ordered two T-shirts, one for me and one for him indoors.