“You’ve no business buying a mare like that
But buy her if you must,”
He bit the end off his cigar
And spat it in the dust
“She’s old, she’s lame and barren too,
She’s not worth feeding hay,
But I’ll give her this,” he blew smoke at me,
“She was something in her day.

“I recall her well 10 years ago
She was a winner in her prime
She was fast and lean and willing
But they raced her past her time
And though she had the heart
Her legs were gone
It wasn’t hard to see
But they kept her at it in the hopes
Of one more small victory.

“She was shunted round from track to track
From Kentucky up to Maine,
They’d run her in cheap claimers
All doped up to mask her pain
And if its my advice you want, I’d say
The poor things had her day,
You’d be throwing good cash after bad
It’s best,” he turned away

Oh they led her round the auction shed
And bidding started low
She’ll go for dog food someone said
The markets been that slow
But she raised her head and pricked her ears
And before the hammer fell
“She’s was mine”
My friend turned round to me
“You’re soft-headed I can tell.

“But she’d been shoved from pillar to post, said I
And always done her best
They used her up, they rung her dry
You’d think she earned her rest
So if she does not bode out her day
Beneath some shady tree
I’ll have saved her from the knackers yard
And that’s enough for me

Oh that was near two years ago
She’s filled out some since then
And more so since she’s been in foal
She eats enough for ten
And this morn as I crept to the barn
Around ’bout half past three
There stood nursing on still trembling legs
One more “small victory”.

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