Listen for a living
They pay you not to care
Just keep good time, a tidy room
A plastic plant and chair

And sit and hear their problems
With tissues close at hand
You take the place of absent friends
(The job they couldn’t stand)

They do not need a verdict
It’s not your place to judge
This isn’t their shock-therapy
You cannot bear a grudge

The woes they wail to tempt you
Are all the world they know
Unpacking all their sorrows
They dump the lot and go

Not fearful that tomorrow
They’ll pass you in the street
No matter what they tell you
You have to be discreet

The X Factor

Creative in confusion
With the power to detain
Those who’d listen hear the fusion
Of a diff’rent kind of pain

Once a middleing existence
Was the best that one might hope
Now another fifteen minutes
Mean the girl may meet the Pope

Who can blame the world for being slow
Or making things too hard
All of life is but a gameshow
So she held the winning card

How appearance is deceiving
Any moment may undo
All the promise of an evening
Lies in ruins by the dew

The girl had surely found her feet
When she began to juggle fire
Too soon the circus clutched their seat
To see her strut across the wire

Now the bird is softly singing
As she spreads her wings to soar
Past the bitter joys of winning
She must settle ev’ry score

The white elephant of hist’ry
Now must hide itself away
For the truth remains a myst’ry
In the sober light of day