The old farmer


He never takes his cap off, it seems welded to his head. The cowman reckons he wears it even when he goes to bed.

He wears the same old jacket in snow and summers sun. His pockets are full of cough sweets and a cartridge for his gun.

He wears faded moleskin trousers with string around the waist. He keeps a penknife and some matches and a pound note just in case.

And his ancient moss green jumper that's been darned up by his wife, is the one he got at market and he's kept it all his life.

His boots are worn and covered in dubbin from a tin. They've seen him through some tough times but now are wearing thin.

He can't stop a pig in a passage, his legs are locked and bowed. His back is bent by his farming and all the fields he's ploughed.

His eyes are full of wisdom, he has seen a lot of change. He's never left the village and some new folk think he's strange.

His hands are gnarled and curled up, his face is lined and red. He still likes to have a potter with his old tools in his shed.

But behind the worn out body is a man who loves the land. who knows each tree and hedgerow, though not everyone understands.

His instinct for his livestock he didn't get from a book. It's from years of observation whilst leaning on his crook.

He's from a generation that understood the need to farm for the next generation and for that we should pay heed. Jan Millward©

©Jan Millward, 2018

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