"the buzzards came and undressed her"
Turkey Vulture
Creative Commons AttributionTurkey Vulture - Credit: Don DeBold

In North American English, buzzard typically means vulture, and is most often applied to the Turkey Vulture. These scavengers, which feed mainly on carcasses, are common enough to be considered a pest in rural areas. They figure often in Faulkner’s work, most strikingly in As I Lay Dying (1930), where the coiling tension is mirrored by the ever-closer circling of buzzards attracted by the smell of Addie Bundren’s corpse.


Faulkner once stated in an interview for the Paris Review, "If I were reincarnated, I'd want to come back a buzzard. Nothing hates him or envies him or wants him or needs him. He is never bothered or in danger, and he can eat anything."