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Why Brownlee Left

by Paul Muldoon

Why Brownlee left, and where he went,
Is a mystery even now.
For if a man should have been content
It was him; two acres of barley,
One of potatoes, four bullocks,
A milker, a slated farmhouse.
He was last seen going out to plough
On a March morning, bright and early.

By noon Brownlee was famous;
They had found all abandoned, with
The last rig unbroken, his pair of black
Horses, like man and wife,
Shifting their weight from foot to
Foot, and gazing into the future.


Paul Muldoon was born in 1951 in Co. Armagh and was educated at Queen’s University, Belfast. In 1972 he won an Eric Gregory Award. He works in Belfast as a producer for the BBC. (1983)

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AGNI Magazine :: published at Boston University ©2008 AGNI