Infernal Performance Couple


    His love for her is proportionate to her off-putting coldness to others.


    Her dull faćade, an almost opaque mask, belies his belief in her expression and creativity.


    He is willing to risk, to hazard his credibility, by his cooperation in this embarrassing scandal to Empiricism.


    The interest in his own uniqueness and talent, personal and professional, is compromised.





I was busted

I was tapped out

what little business I had was slow

I was tired

my ideas in a drought

no inspiration, no


I took the little key

that they’d given to me

but 811 was blocked

I was overdue with the fee

my P.O. box was locked


I said, “Can I at least get my mail?”

they said, “There’s nothing at all.”

“That sounds about right…”

that got a laugh;

maybe I can make it as a comic


why did they have to lock it

but I found change in my pocket

so I headed to a place

where I knew the wait staff

and I could get a coffee for free

is there anything I haven’t hocked

hmm…let me see

my P.O. box is locked


maybe I was tired

maybe I was inspired

or maybe I was just giddy

but I thought: even the junk mail

have taken me off their list

the ultimate, a new low in self-pity

I admit I was shocked

even though I am an optimist

my P.O. box was locked


but then the thought came to me

that I still had the key

and I should think of what I had

instead of what I had not


balls! it’s all half-cocked

my P.O. box is locked






She looks in the bar mirror,

gazes at the face

of the wearer.

Limited by the features

her face has,

are they hers?

They might be made of rubber

or porcelain or

something other.

There is no moment stiller,

more mysterious

or flatter.

Sitting at the zinc counter

in the late night place

at such an hour.





Inbal, Inbal,

the first time

I saw you

you had


what you had

made me

wish to lose


one cold glance

from you

could my hopes



Then one night

you came

to see me


you were part

of our



you stayed

without my

having to



Another night

we went

to a


you filled in

the facts

of your

foreign soul;

we rated

New York,

pros and cons

and all:

I wondered

what ever

could be

my role.



we shared

by common


South America

looming as

your goal.


Then your friend

said you

had left town

for good.


I see you on

the other platform,


in your fur coat

waving away

you stole.



trains no

one can




Is That Him?


Is that him

sitting in the sun

on the bench reading the newspaper

in an Italian suit

with fancy shoes

and bright red socks

hair dyed black

crumpled face

who to ask?


© David Francis


Bio: David Francis has produced six albums of songs, one of poems, and "Always/Far," a chapbook of lyrics and drawings.  He has written and directed the films "Village Folksinger" (2013) and "Memory Journey" (2018).  David's poems and stories have appeared in a number of journals and anthologies.