Monday, 14 November 2011


Poem 11 of 230:  OTHER SIDE

On the road from Inverness to Glasgow
    (A very scenic road it is),
I hitched with a pair - Italiano;
    The left-hand-drive Fiat was his.

I think they had taken turns at driving -
    I’m not sure from where or how far;
But, when they picked me up from my hiking,
    The lady was driving the car.

I recall how warm their greet did feel,
    And what a thrilling trip it was;
For, as their hands fought over the wheel,
    Our lives came near to loss:

I was sitting tight on the back-right side -
    My ears off their argument;
But my eyes surely knew how close beside
    The oncoming vehicles went!

We arrived without a scratch at Glasgow,
    But it begs this point, I feel -
Why did our forebears decide to go
    Either side for the new wheel?

(C) David Franks 2003

Sunday, 13 November 2011


Poem 12 of 230:  GOLF AT KILLARNEY

At Killarney Golf and Fishing Club,
    There’s two great courses to be found;
Built on Ireland’s fine Ring of Kerry,
    Both are really worth a round.

From the local social Youth Hostel,
    I hitched - doing as Irish do;
Then paid to play both the courses,
    But missed five holes - Hostel curfew.

The fairways were lush and nicely groomed,
    And the course views the best I’ve seen;
With walks beside the lakes and mountains,
    I’m proud to say to there I’ve been.

(C) David Franks 2003

Saturday, 12 November 2011


Poem 13 of 230:  UNDERDONE

At the age of twenty-one,
Art and culture were just done.

At the age of twenty-one,
Adventure and sport were fun.

At the age of twenty-one,
For Paris, I was underdone.

(C) David Franks 2003

Friday, 11 November 2011


Poem 14 of 230:  NIGHT OR DAY?!

In the far north of Sweden
    (A "Land of the Midnight Sun”),
A strange thing chanced upon me -
    And I’ll tell you, just for fun.

Got off a train late-morning
    (Had to catch same one next day)
And trudged far to the Youth Hostel -
    Paying for a one-night stay.

I spent the afternoon sightseeing,
    Then, after a latish dinner,
Returned to my own small bedroom -
    The comfy bed proving a winner.

For I soon dozed into dreamy sleep -
    Waking what was just two hours hence;
But my watch was an analogue,
    And night or day I couldn’t sense!

I quickly packed all my things
    (My train an hour or thirteen on)
And hurried out the bedroom -
    The bright sky a sneaky con.

I wandered down the track a bit
    (The Hostel office empty),
Before a smiling helpful local
    Did kindly enlighten me.

(C) David Franks 2003

Thursday, 10 November 2011


Poem 15 of 230:  TOREO

I’m a fan of the Spanish way -
    I like their houses and their food;
But there is one thing I must say -
    Their bullfights do upset my mood.

The matadors may be brave folk,
    And the tradition an old one;
But what must also be spoke
    Is - the bulls’ pain before they’re done.

(C) David Franks 2003

Wednesday, 9 November 2011


Poem 16 of 230:  A BEAUTIFUL STAGE

If a couple, with plans to wed,
    Asked me, off the top of my head,
On somewhere I thought well in-tune
    As a place for a honeymoon,
It would have - flashing back - to be
    Beautifully-honed Italy.

(C) David Franks 2003

Tuesday, 8 November 2011


Poem 17 of 230:  THROUGH WHAT WAS

During Europe’s summer, ‘88,
    At a wall my bag was checked:
A brief smile at what gave it weight...
    Sun-cream lid back - mood not wrecked.
I walked past plain buildings and cars,
    And entered a small food-store.
Its goods were plain, also: no sweet bars;
    The essentials - not much more.
As I bought crispbread with money changed,
    A row began, at counter,
Between two, it seemed, Germans estranged -
    Clothes, to me, the sole pointer.
I headed back through the wall that was,
    Then signed a reunion book.
Reflecting, I’m happy/sad because
    The Left-cause, too, has been shook.

(C) David Franks 2003

Monday, 7 November 2011



Neither by stealth,                   I was shocked, too,
    With the loud wealth    By a squat loo.

(C) David Franks 2003

Squat toilet at Dubai Airport;
February 2014

Posh loo with a view, in The Cloud,
Beetham Tower, Manchester; 4/4/17

Sunday, 6 November 2011


Poem 19 of 230:  JET

With time-based rail passes,
    As many youths still do,
I caught the trains through Europe -
    A good time it was, too.

But, late one night that summer,
    I ran full-on in vain,
Through quiet streets in Paris,
    To catch the London train.

And, at that Paris station,
    They closed the doors throughout,
For cleaning through the morning,
    Insisting - stragglers out.

So it was that a few of us
    Spent the night on the street,
And, I do declare to you,
    It left young me dead beat.

Yet there are many stragglers,
    Within the human domain,
Spending all their nights as such -
    While others own a plane!

(C) David Franks 2003

Saturday, 5 November 2011


Poem 20 of 230:  CHINA AND INDIA IN 1988

China and India:
    Dense populations both;
But China is, by far,
    Much more humane - my oath;
For through both I took trains,
    And saw the gap in pains.

China and India:
    Great cuisines they have both;
But China is, by far,
    Much more humane - my oath;
For not once in packed China
    Was I begged by a minor.

China and India:
    Lasting cultures in both;
But china is, by far,
    Much more humane - my oath;
For India does need
    Left-policies - indeed!

(China and India:
    Many creatures in both;
But, in this case, China
    Is less kindly - my oath;
For, on pain, they fret less
    In keeping their food fresh.)

(C) David Franks 2003