Author Topic: ---- donít fan away the bluebottles with any turkey wing  (Read 52 times)

Offline t k

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---- donít fan away the bluebottles with any turkey wing
« on: June 30, 2020, 09:13:12 am »
ďYou ask me what my program is. Here it is, you hicks. And
donít you forget it. Nail íem up! Nail up Joe Harrison, Nail up
anybody who stands in your way. ... Nail íem up on the
barn door! And donít fan away the bluebottles with any turkey
wing
  (from All the King's Men, by Robert Penn Warren; a larger context is here; use ctrl-f to locate the sentence)

Please explain "donít fan away the bluebottles with any turkey wing".  Thanks.  --- tk

Offline Darryl

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Re: ---- donít fan away the bluebottles with any turkey wing
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2020, 09:49:02 am »
A pretty grim picture! He's saying to hang the bodies and as they rot, don't brush away the bluebottles (flies). Very graphic.

Offline t k

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Re: ---- donít fan away the bluebottles with any turkey wing
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2020, 09:29:02 am »
Thanks, Darryl.  Bluebottle seems too pretty a name for such a fly, rather suits a cornflower.

And then why turkey wing?  I found that "turkey wing" also means "arc shell", but it still doesn't help.  Thanks again.  --- tk

Offline Bertha

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Re: ---- donít fan away the bluebottles with any turkey wing
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2020, 11:53:18 am »
I think it was common to preserve large turkey wing feathers so they could be used as a fan to keep the flies away. 
Bertha