I love the thrill of market, the noises and the smell. The people and the cattle, the sound of the calling bell.
Old George would always be there, in greasy ancient cap. With trousers and crossed braces and legs set at a gap.
Taking in the glory of cattle at their peak, or waiting for the day when folk come to sell their sheep.
Leaning on his stick with a twinkle in his eye, checking all the livestock but he doesn't come to buy.
This has been his journey, farming all his life. Growing old and lonely after he lost his wife.
This has been his lifeline, it's full of his old friends. He notes down all the prices, he follows all the trends.
And no one walks right past him without a friendly chat, a moan about the weather tales of this and that.
He buys a bacon butty and his favourite steaming brew, and settles by the ringside where he gets a better view.
He chats with all the drivers the stockmen and the hands, the farmers and the youngsters who now work on the land.
He's been part of this old market since he was just a boy, he's loved by everybody and it fills his heart with joy.
And when George hangs up his jacket and leaves behind this life, we hope he'll be reunited with Molly his dear wife.
And the market will fall silent, they'll remember their old friend, a gentleman and a farmer right to the very end. Jan Millward©