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Ryan Dennis

Ryan Dennis is the son of a New York dairy farmer and a literary writer whose early essays were originally published in Progressive Dairyman.

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If you’re going to murder your love rival, all the better if he has a cool name.

Currently, an Irish jury is deliberating whether to convict 50-year-old farmer Patrick Quirke for killing part-time DJ Bobby Ryan – better known as Mr. Moonlight – out of jealous affection for the 52-year-old farm widow Mary Lowry.

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Every English major knows the slagging that comes with announcing your choice of study. Close friends and concerned relatives play it off as a momentary lapse of judgement or quote employment statistics they hastily looked up on their phone.

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“Is he still staring at us?” my girlfriend asked.

I glanced over my shoulder. An old man stood in the glaring sun, nude. His small chest was caved-in and bent forward, his legs spindly and knobby.

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For the last three years, the word “Brexit” has dominated international headlines. Most Americans know that it deals with the United Kingdom (UK) leaving the European Union (EU) but, beyond that, the details get hazy.

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Four burned-out vehicles. Three men hospitalized. Bats and axe handles lying in the mud. A dead dog.

The aftermath looked apocalyptic at Anthony McGann’s farm in rural Ireland. Or the stuff of old westerns.

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India, a country in which 70 percent of people are involved in agriculture one way or another, has experienced an epidemic of farmer suicides in recent decades. The phenomenon is attributed to the difficulties of the occupation, which can range from monsoon failure to crop problems to money-lending vultures.

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