The Cows

by D Angelo


A handful of cows, fed up with their predestined fate, decided to abandon the pastures and move into an unoccupied house. They ate Doritos and watched football. Drank Budweiser as rain pecked at the windows. Sometimes lightning would charge like a bull across the sky. The cows would laugh at the irony before curling up against each other for warmth. The cows did all the chores, including mowing the lawn, and enjoyed the experience. When the original owner of the house appeared, she fell to her knees and wept, having never experienced this kind of life before.


Shortlisted for the 2023 Manchester Poetry Prize, D Angelo (also credited as D A Angelo) is a UK-based writer with work in Autumn Sky Poetry Daily, Sage Cigarettes, Flights of the Dragonfly and Petrichor Mag.


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What surprising, fascinating stuff can you tell us about the origin, drafting, and/or final version of “The Cows”?

This is loosely based on actual incidents. My research brought up bizarre incidents of cows occupying empty houses in rural areas such as Montana, only for their owners to return shocked. Nobody knows why cows (and other animals) do this. I wanted to put a surreal spin on it and create a small story alluding to the unhappiness we can all face at times.


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