Belinda the Brush


‘Come back here you little Pelican’ she mocks, her grin beaming
the littlest Princess tears off at a hundred miles an hour in the opposite direction,
her grin making a perfect pair but where is Belinda?

‘Belinda the Brush is hiding somewhere and I want to brush your hair’

we sing, looking in all the usual spots, the bookshelf, the dressing table, in the bathroom before she’s finally located on the chair in front of us
the littlest Princess settles herself down and we begin the next verse

‘Belinda the Brush is brushing my hair,
Belinda the Brush is brushing my hair’

What will it be today my love, a ponytail or a plait like the witch? A plait.
Julia Donaldson has made an impression so I break into a witches cackle

We have some minor complaints;
those pesky knots require a change of tact, under my magnificent spell the job is done, satisfaction filling my heart, hers brewing the buds of patience, temperance and pride

‘Belinda the Brush is brushing my hair and there’ll be no bullshit there’

I love my littlest Princess.  Our destiny entwined like my fingers through her hair
she doesn’t know it yet but Our Lady watches over her with great grandma, and granny working her magic almost daily

I can see all the kids, you and me (and grandma), green grass blue smoke, my Harley
still under wraps – our home, where the heart is resonating in your drums

(Myles), Harken, Madison, Seth, La Donna, Whisky, Carmen, Karmin and Leisa
– our family so far, more to come, perfect!

One day I will learn how to cook and teach my littlest Princess how to knit like Nana

Rheumatic Stigmata


The bed creaks like your bones
that moan and groan
that slow grind through clenched teeth, that need between the sheets


It’s August now
as cold as it gets here in Winter.
I’m buying an electric blanket to warm you through; least I run you through with my lasciviously pointy finger!

Still, I wrap my legs around your freezing appendages, making
a spoonful of sugar while you lick the cream from your Cheshire :-D

I can’t help but bear your stubborn, stoic Far North Queenslander pride;
pleasured simplicity, complicit with your Will to burn the wick at both ends, ajoint screaming a string of profanity

In Summer, I knead your splintered lamb shank while you shovel nutrition down with a tincture of mindfullness, layer upon layer of oil, and Green Tea setting the scene for a modern beer

I find it hard, to watch your tenacity
come face to face with Dachau,
Grim barking out his contempt while she ducks for cover in sewage…

We have to make the trip worthwhile or its all for naught; she signs a cross, Pope John Paul II raises the host because he has all the respect in the world

for Mary.  Sometimes I wonder
what will become of our inheritance
if the light at the end of the tunnel
really is another oncoming train?

We have to find a way through our fragile past lives where we would seethe on the outside and cower on the in, if it weren’t for temperance; sharp edges constrained by blunt force trauma

In the meantime, I heat the purple wheat bag in the microwave
laying it carefully between the sheets
You know I love you most when you least expect it

© Copyright 2015, Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved



‘I don’t recognise myself anymore’

That fool,
That blind stupid fool
Whose face lit up and smiled like Cheshire – following you everywhere, once
She saw the sun shine out of your arse like a fractured halo and dared to love you
it’s gone
And all I can think about is how to sign off, how to extricate myself from my humiliation;
That cacophony of cackling voices

The concept of love is as corrupt and meaningless as the world in which I live

Its not for me
I want out, I don’t want to look for anything to look forward to, or to be reborn
to have love fail and rubbed in my face like spent semen again and again
I want oblivion, finality
One painful life is enough for me

How can love co-exist anymore than Buddha, Allah, Jesus or Mary?

I am truly blind, and my refusal truly will offend
I’ve swallowed my insecurity, like my black & white thinking and let it corrode me like acid from the inside out
All that was left of me departed many many years ago
I can still remember that cold damp smell of death…
I should never have been allowed to live!

I think about death and dying
I am like that single stone that skips a few beats before it sinks to the bottom, out of sight, never to be thought of again
There is absolutely nowhere left for me to go
I am a shell of what I once was
A hollow husk of withered cells, dying my slow and agonizing death
Angry for being so magnificently vulnerable in contemptible self loathing

And to think that there are those among us who want to live!

There’s that optimism again,
I should feel blessed except everything feels jaded, burned and extinguished
Life just isn’t worth living
I guess that’s my ungrateful selfish nature showing her true colours

© Copyright 2015, Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved

Interstellar Medium

Orion Constellation

Orion takes my breath away!

His belt & scabbard first
then shoulders
& I wrap myself around him
I am at peace
looking out over the ocean
& a sky full of stars

You are not unlike Orion
guiding distant ships on the horizon
I am like a Klingon
(Klingon usually mate for life)
but not this tide
we are an interstellar medium:
the space between
Euryale & Poseidon

We are of the Sea

reef, rocks & shoals
perilous waters
where foghorns & Siren songs sound familiar
where fishy tales flush pink
& my Veuve overflows

It doesn’t take me long to remember
expectation is one two threefold
we navigate in the dark sometimes
moonlit mirrors reflect only one part of the whole
our universe is bigger than most

I draw a line in the sand

for both our sakes
there can be only one
I feel the waves crash on the shore
we are all arms & legs
slipping & sliding
in & out of the water

I look to the stars & my faith
for one brief moment there is no existential crisis
Orion’s heavy breathing & sigh of relief
bring us both back to reality
under the surface
Death is not an unknown entity:
one last roll of the di
& our fate could be sealed

Thank you

Orion will always be near
Jupiter will always be the brightest planet
the full moon will always shine on me
I could never go past King Island
without thinking of you
candlelight, frogs & our best mate
Captain’s call still falling on deaf ears

but nevermind
I’m still as blind as a bat
& you’re as old as the hills

© Copyright 2015, Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved



One of my more random creative streams… Jx

Originally posted on Poetry Out West:

I remember sneaking out of my bedroom window when I lived with my grandparents for the second time the mescaline cactus was chopped off at the bottom which surprised the wall that held the house up lasting so long over the years  it was an old house but not prickly when the juice drained and my first boyfriend knocked I had to be very quiet except for the old metal blinds that didn’t work and I could hear them talking amongst themselves in the bedroom too  I didn’t think they could hear me then together snuggled under their feather duvet warm as I was soon to be most of the time when nana would bring me a cup of tea in the morning like soup but after she read the tea-leaves so I knew I had to be quiet I remember the house built by his own hands after the war it was farmed and raised by the family at the time the steps are gone now replaced and the house has sunken with age like grandfather buried…

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Mr Black & the Muse


I’m addicted to you
& your crooked muse smile
Mr Black

I’ll have you
you stole my heart
rendering her useless;
undoing held together
your thick lens
drunk & debauchery

for a moment
nothing existed
except obsession,
compulsion mimicking
lust & Mr Black
rose like a Phoenix
under my skin

Every day, an eternity
to wait for you
my muse feigning temperance
the door handle turns
& I pick myself up off the floor
giggle & take the piss
Mr Black doesn’t
waste any time

Concord flights of fancy
meticulous mind-numbing marathons
whatever the abandoned mood once was,
I’m yours
you had me way back then,
smashed, crash landing on my bed
the sun about to rise
on the last place we left from

My balcony:
a table & two chairs
the Great Dividing Range
filtered by my Veuve Clichot
you with your Winnie Red
threshold surpassed
a box of beers,
tartan shorts & flannelette


I make you coffee.
night owls wouldn’t normally complain
under ordinary circumstances
but we are far from that place
the buzz & bleep of mobile phones
alter-egos known or not
pierce our cocoon
we drag our arse into work

Dreaming, we see all the children
& Grandma
Mr Black runs amok
kids fight over whose turn it is
blue smoke & green grass
my Harley under wraps
coveted like our memories

© Copyright 2014, Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved


When I think about my Grandparents, I am instantly drawn back to my childhood.

So many memories.  Drum kits under the bed, electric helicopters, the piano, so many green bottles on the wall! The boat they named after me – Jodine. The new Kent fire. Those two Retro chairs.  The Army hut in the back yard where I got up to mischief.  The original Hibiscus Coast Taxi – a beautiful white Chevrolet that was to become the symbol of family pride. Poisonous berries on the way to the front door…I thought about eating them sometimes just to see what would happen.

So many memories.  Being with my Grandparents saved my life.  I spent every chance I had with them and their energy.  My home away from home.  I played dress-ups, created pottery, made string kaleidoscopes, learned how to draw, listened to Johnny Cash and Demis Roussous and learned how to sing.  I learned how to be independent… and how to access the Red paint from under the house!

So many memories of driving up North to the Bach at Omamari Beach in the Great White Chev, always looking for the road markers along the way: The Three Furlongs Tavern at Kaiwaka on the way to the Brynderwyns.  Playing Eye Spy and  “Are we there yet” all the way, completely winding them both up till we spied the Toka Toka hill (thinking it was some sort of magic mountain pacifier) . I remember learning to drive the Chev too but I preferred the yellow Beach buggy, taking it out every chance I got to speed along the beach by myself – bliss.

So many memories of wild west coast surf, Tussock grass, sunburn, cliffs, caves, rock pools, the Kai Iwi Lakes, Contiki’s, Kahawai, Toheroa’s, Tua Tua’s and heading up to Bluff for fresh Green-lipped Mussels off the rocks. My world was full of good old-fashioned love.  My Grandparents taught me how to believe in myself too.  I now know what it means to follow my dreams and remain true to myself no matter what other people might say, think, speculate or fabricate.  To this day I still remain free-spirited.  I live a very full, open, creative, exotic and vibrant life.  I will not be told to shut up.  I will not be put in my ‘so-called’ place.  My voice will no longer be silenced.

My Grandparents were my whole world back then and now that Nana is with Grandpop, I can once again see them sitting side by side, their bones warmed by the fire, looking out onto the world they helped create – for me, for us.  My Grandparents will always be my happy place.  I even have a fond memory of Nana’s tea that was more like soup and her cheese and pickle onion sandwiches.  My Grandparents were my first love.  Nothing or no one can take these memories away from me.  I was there for it all and I thank them both for loving me.

© Copyright 2013, Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved