Strangers

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It was like meeting a stranger.

That uncomfortable feeling of awkward recognition and detachment — that made me want to run least I fall apart, reveal my core which you saw, reflected back at you between glimpses.

That unspoken knowing.

I felt the push of energy and the pull of old habits back into regression, back into the familiar comfort zone of old where nothing changes and we both die a little bit more inside and destiny forgets to reset.

I’m wondering if we’re humble enough to surrender, strong enough to become vulnerable long enough to push through the sparks, ignite the fire and transform pain into passion so we can both decide to rise.

We dance as if we’re going nowhere but in reality, we are already somewhere. Somewhere untapped, viscerally raw and undeniably on the edge of something far greater than either of us anticipated of love.

I want us to push through.

We are free falling to unknown depths and still creating marble pillars from blind faith alone, to eck out an existence that illuminates the veils so we can both find freedom in enlightenment.

All we need to do is walk through the door and let go of the past once and for all and finally fall completely and utterly in love where nothing else matters, except us.

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Lovers Lament

She longs to be held,
my Mary Magdalene, in a lovers embrace.
Spooned & cocooned
Jesus, giving his life
for her.

His arms, extend
holding on giving in
sinking further; a fusion
of flesh & bone,
a comfort hold & home.

I know he too saw
the black curtain fall
& from that moment
they were lost. Lost
& found.

Karma settles scores
resets the All, divine demands
an eternal sacrifice
& Mary yearns for desire
to make it all worthwhile.

A light.

Recognition, foretells
omens coming in three’s,
a wiccan rede; magic, morality
& the afterlife,
a promise from Eden.

She wails. Mary
kisses the soul of destiny,
trusting something bigger
than her parts & let’s go
giving in to fates fury.

A slow grind
losing lust’s sake
to find love & the third eye
delves to depths of compassion
just to be touched.

I long to find her
bring her back whole
to let you in & feel
time expand & contract
as-if we were one.

Despair leaves her wanting.
Holy moments
of magic come & go
Mary holds on, buries herself
in Jesus’ warm arms & hides.

Two lovers lament
looking for something
& leave with nothing; numbness
held in a vice-like grip.
Begone!

Time, will ignite
the cosmic fire
that drew them together. Love,
is bigger than what they once
knew of love.

If I surrender, we can
let go — trust
universal intelligence &
rebuild the architecture of life
in our own image.

Mother Mary is finding her way
& it is already written in the stars.
Jesus IS the way, the truth
& the light.
Ours is creation.

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Artemisia

Artemisia

Demeter feels deep shame.

That niggling voice belies demons who whisper their disapproval. I don’t want them to hate her. It’s easier to hide away until she can return, find compassion for their mistrust.

She is too big.

The things she pontificates under duress, scare me. It is best that I learn to trust Hermes – to ask for something with a reason instead of stealing something without one.

Mourning.

Loss, tears open a hole — splits a scar further apart; destroying a perfectly sealed crust. Fragments of flaky skin scatter to the wind, shed a diatribe of unforgiving.

She moves in and out of the ether.

Flying through space and time searching for another wormhole, another passage to take her to Persephone, that damned alter-ego who dwells in the deep recesses of purgatory. Home is where her heart aches to return.

Demeter negotiates another extrapolation.

Manifesting a spiral vortex, she hones her parts and I wait for the impact to knock me off my feet — wake me up with a jolt of epiphany where I love the magnificence of my creation.

She does not belong to Hades.

Demeter is radiant. All the virtues I try to bestow; a culmination of strength and vitality and love to honour – my integrity in spades.

I am omnipresent.

Her mouth is shut preferring solace over a wailing lament that conjures a maelstrom of death and dying. I could do well to endure no more, wrath has held me bound.

Tonight Demeter ascends.

I return to myself and you are free to wander in search of true love and find your Artemisia, a perfect match for your Nemesis.

No Light, No Light by Florence and the Machine

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Ether Box

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Ethereal

My ether box
graunching & grinding through stargates
shudders, misfiring synapses
lurch from push to pull
ascending
descending
traversing my self worth,
mitigating losses
tempering gains.
I am giving in,
my self esteem proving much harder
to love and set free.

I’m trying to make peace my lover.
Finding my path with you
is unconventional at best
excruciating at worst,
leaving behind
socially acceptable hopes & dreams
settling in to formalities — contracts
designed to pave the way; a gold lining
to my pewter paradise
on that long road to happiness.
I stare into Aphrodite through my looking glass
& blow her a kiss goodbye.

Skeleton’s eventually decay
but demons still want to purge pain,
set me up to fail
tempt Narcissus to stray,
to step away from his reflection
& risk a coward’s death.
I ask the Goddess for forgiveness
trust my fate & fury
& instinct to guide me.
Psyche would lead me astray
to plummet over the edge
of reason — but Aphrodite will broker a deal.

Start over. My fossil fuelled forge
will always find a way forward,
transform blue light beams
into fire, illuminate those pitchforks
& burning crosses hiding in my ether;
shadows that threaten
to cast spells & incinerate whole galaxies,
merely pseudo reflections
of my reality. I choose you
& take no prisoners at the same time,
for I choose wisely.

There is no burden I cannot bear
when it comes to you,
how you see yourself is a reflection.
We hold our head & hearts
in their hands; their hands
create a destiny for us both.
We are intertwined & enlightened —
a gift from God.
Our souls recognise, accept & understand
there is only now, the past is gone. The future is
whatever we divine.

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Demeters Descent

Demeter Descending

You’ve been breaking me.

Killing me softly like that song, trying not to harm me, trying not to lie — letting me fall to see if I come back stronger. I know what you’re doing; giving me facts to face my fears
so you don’t have to wear a mask.

Sinking me down further, bit by bite.

You watch me wrestle with Psyche, see the squalls before they arrive, the rogue waves looming on the horizon and try to navigate the shit storm that is my life or so I imagine her lot,

Sometimes.

Forecast’s based upon trust, an old school remedy tried and tested over centuries of trial and error, almost on the doorstep of my abandonment. I have to want to choose my life over my life, play with fire or die in vain — seek some sort of comfort hold that pulls me close (safe), that doesn’t strangle me in my sleep.

Demeters demise.

Comes as no surprise then. Her return from the underworld fraught with danger, shed the All, her only hope of salvation and ascension coming to light; Zeus rumbling his desires expects nothing less than a fathers love in return.

I think I am forsaken.

You think I am like Poppy, offer me a chance to be apart of a real family, show me another way to heal, to find warmth and trust that I am genuinely loved where I can thrive, in time. Something I have too much of and not enough to squander.

I want to give it all away.

My job, my friend, my life in exchange for something worth fighting for, yet I am bereft, devoid and damaged beyond repair and you cannot reach me. I need more time to get over you.

Another, will begin another end

to wear me down to char. Somehow my destiny taunts me, forces me to watch and become nothing but a burdon I still have to carry when I can no longer fight and I don’t have what it takes to push through, for you.

Trust no one.

Bravery has always been a strong fulcrum point, an internal compass that leaps toward faith, a little too close for comfort in the end. My judgement will come as swiftly as Hera came forward to claim what was rightfully hers, tearing out her own heart for the sake of her enemies!

You don’t want me.

My demons are telling me I have to die a bit more in order to live but it still hurts to say goodbye. Either way, I am lost right now and there’s nothing anyone can do. You’re all in for a hell ride while I deconstruct and I make no guarantees that I will survive intact this time.

Evolution.

My head is trying to cling to straws while my heart is breaking and I have no where left to go, except home. The secret to survival is balancing hope and despair. I am doing my best and I am so tired.

Guflydktskyl vg j jkhlhc. Khhc khckhc. Uclhfflh. Yxjrekh. Kyeekgxkyggl. It all makes no sense to me. Just empty words in hollow spaces

All This & Heaven Too – Florence and the Machine

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Home to Freedom

Companionship

True companionship
Comes from creating what you want
Creating the environment
Letting each other go
To see if we keep coming back

Home to freedom
Home to peace
Home to love
Home to our selves

Away into chaos
A way into the darkness

To find the light
The joy
The unknown

And live a fulfilling life.

So Tied Up – Cold War Kids & Bishop Briggs

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Welcome To My World

You don’t get to my age
Without learning a thing or two

I’ve learned to trust no one
But myself

I’m not about to risk everything
On blind faith, alone.

You think you’ve been burned?
You’re not the only one.

Do you think I haven’t been there?
Because I have, and it didn’t end well.

You think your trust is broken?
You have no idea about my life.

I’m not about to risk it all, again
When your cards are not on the table.

I am an aging woman, in a man’s world
Willing to show you who I am

To a point. The rest is up to you.
I am a partner, not a trophy

An equal, not a mistress
Older, wise, psychic and astute.

I am here now because I trusted
More than once, twice too many.

Don’t you dare tell me I have broken your trust!
When I’m the only one who is here for you.

I am still here, waiting for you
To stop cutting off your nose

Yet you expect me to trust you
Your word, your honour, your faith?

That only goes so far
Actions speak much louder than words ever will.

You have no idea how much I gave
Am willing to give, how much I have

To bring to your table —
Treat you like the King you are

But I don’t have first world choices
And I don’t want third world realities

Everything I do, is to survive
Calculating risks, hedging my bets

I don’t have to be dishonourable to do it.
I can see well enough when I look.

What I saw, was not what I wanted to see.
You, your tells betrayed you.

Nothing more, nothing less.
You are not willing or able to see me

Yet, but you will.

The best five months of your life
Is compared to borderline personalities from your past

And those voices set you up to fail.
Still, you choose to see only what you expect to see in me.

I am not here to play games.
I chose to be with you because it felt good

But you are uncomfortable with good.
You don’t know yourself as well as you think.

You are not me.
I am holistically unique and

Cruelty is not my style.
I don’t kick the dog when he’s down,

I take responsibility for my part
You will not humble yourself enough to bare.

I have not abandoned you
You pushed me away, again.

I see you for what you are
Right here, right now a mirror.

I can roll with you quite content
But I keep her on a leash

(You know exactly what I’m talking about)
Because I sense something isn’t true.

The difference is I feel,
I express and I talk to you about it.

I asked you to meet my darkness,
You left me.

I process my thoughts and feelings raw,
I know no other way

To show you what I’m willing to risk
Of myself for you.

You lie, because you think it protects me,
I call it as I see it.

I saw.

You will never know who I am
Until you see yourself through my eyes and feel.

If you actually love me
You’d show it when shit gets real

By being kinder, softer
Compassionate and loving.

I don’t need your help
to take out the rubbish.

You discarded me
Because I called bullshit.

Does that mean I was right?
Prove me wrong.

Take me to Church – Hozier

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Limbo Suffragette

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Limbo

Isolation
Lonliness

Altruistic tendencies.

A real man looks after his woman.

Builds up hope
Says all the right things

Means what he says
Does what he means.

Love.

Means nothing if it’s bullshit.

Is he going to break me?
Is he breaking me?

Old habits?

Does he want me to leave?
Could I leave?

Would I keep coming back?

Hurting me
Being hurt

Loving you
Being loved.

What is magic?

Where do I belong?

Destiny.

Who is there for me?
Who is there for you?

How long do I wait for what exactly –
Love, security, money, both?

Hibernation.

Am I discarded?

Be like water.

Do I belong here yet?

A limbo suffragette.

A caregiver.

Am I just a caregiver?

He doesn’t want me for that.
What does he want me for?

Companionship.
Am I expected to be faithful?
Am I enough?

Convenience
A means to an end?
I’m not sure what he wants.

Friendship.
Am I on the market?
I’m not sure I’m available.

Marriage.
Will I accept the contract?
Do I really belong here?

I want a partner.

He needs a wife

Wants a legacy.

More children?

Hanging by a thread
Dangling on a ledge.

Friend, enemy, lover, acquaintance.

Loving.

Leaving?

Family, security
Money, happiness

Asking for nothing
Expecting something.

Dignity.

Respect.

Honour.

Am I worthy?
Is he worth it?

Will he build me up?
Bring me down?

Take me on?
Walk away?

Why does he want me?

What did he get?
What am I taking?

What did I get?
What is he taking?

Just roll with it.

Wait for nothing.

Be grateful for everything.

The Devils’ going to make me rich.

I don’t have to worry.

We’re all in it for something.

Yet you offer me everything & nothing.

I just want to love and be loved.

© Copyright 2021, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Happy Bubble

Matty ‘The Rainmaker’ Phoenix

The best thing
since sliced bread
this partnership / relationship.
Two whole slabs of
canna-buttered magic,
set the scene for
an esoteric mind fuck that
wrecks our bed,
churns what the water gave us
into fountains of esctasy.
You’ve ruined me.
Turned my counterparts
into full beam,
full steam ahead
where I don’t want to hide. Hiccups
where opposing forces
try to fuck with our chi,
set us back a step or two
but we bounce, roll & resolve. Easy
to give up — walk away,
put grandiose expectations down
to paranoid delusions of grandeur.
Our past lives set us up
to fail, prove that point
we once knew without a shadow.
Done with kowtow!
Fire; vibrating nuclear fission
fuels my frequency, propels
inertia from the fulcrum,
devouring adversity like a black hole
creates nothing out of something.
I make peace my lover, pray
to my Godhead & surrender
my self to you & only you.
My happy bubble
blessed by a big God
blessed by a bigger Goddess,
stirring up a pagan concoction
that’s good enough for royalty.
Good enough, is good enough!
You are my equal.
I will fight to the death
to hold on to you, knowing
I need to let go
ride the lightening
set the Phoenix alight into freedom
before the day is done.
You’re big, blue & beautiful
my whole world right here, now
centred in my universe
Florence & the Machine
creating an atmosphere for us
to breathe.

© Copyright 2020, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Heavy Heart

Eros & Psyche

Wide open, heart splayed fish knife style

Psyche, screaming white light laser beams; shoots

all remnants of Eros back into the ether

from that gaping hole he left behind, where he once belonged.

Back into the darkness.

Back into the arms of Hades.

Charon mimicking that elusive eternal light with his sway,

caressing Eros once again.

Psyche, abandoned

sinks like a torpedoed battleship straight to the bottom — much to Aphrodite’s delight.

Zeus, doing us all a favour by staying away this time,

crash lands lightening bolts a million miles from now.

One can only imagine the carnage.

Respect is earned.

It costs nothing to behave with honour.

Psyche deserves much more than angry lip service.

Love is not a fucking game!

© Copyright 2020, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Aphrodite
Zeus

Skin & Bitch Bone

I don’t want to go to Church;

Have to kneel for a scrap of bread,

Have to beg for forgiveness,

Have to swallow an empty vessel for a measly sip of port wine.

All of it, on my divine time —

For a bullet with my name on it.

I don’t want to be told what to do;

When I am deemed worthy enough for you.

Where I can live, when you decide

Who I can be with, if it suits them.

What I can wear, to show off my hour-glass figure & classic class.

How I earn my pittance pay & not be dependent on you for anything —

That doesn’t meet with family approval.

I don’t want to live this way;

Waiting for a skin & bitch bone

Salivating over moldy morsels

Wagging my mangy tail,

Waiting for that prayer of approval.

I am of Mary Magdalene.

The Patron Saint of Prostitutes

The red right hand of Jesus —

His only true partner in crime.

I am a Goddess in my own right

& I deserve to be equal, besides

I don’t take kindly to being manipulated by Romans or Benedictine

Monks, attempting to make meals on wheels look A La Carte.

Men who would starve a loved one, & feed a stranger, if it meant they were a step closer to the light.

Attonement casts an evil shadow —

Double standards rape & pillage your family values & family members drop like flies amongst the lies.

/

Heart’s bleed out through cathedrals & stained glass window’s, while you profess your love in gypsy spades.

You piss all over me like a stinking leper!

You, who would decide if I live or die!

Let those who cast the first stone wallow in self pity because I turn my back.

I walk away from you & yours, my bright future fading into despair like the grandiose mirage that it was.

All of it, on your terms.

You would discard me in a heartbeat.

Your entitlement precedes your entourage of everything & nothing,

Where you would set limits on love to the detriment of your own broken heart.

So be it!

These are all moot points in the grand master plan anyway.

The great scheme of things to come, comes at a much greater cost & one I can live without.

Hozier- Take Me To Church

© Copyright 2020, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Delilah

In the depths
Of my despair, flawed

Imperfections serve only to pander to Delilah.

She is much too fast for freedom, too slow to let go.

She could never bring her self to Samson half arsed.

Her darkness tempers his desire

Cool, waters his deflated ego

And she, too far away from home

Floats like a lotus.

© Copyright 2020, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Not That Kind

Madonna/Whore Complex

I’m not that kind of girl.

I am that kind of girl.

I can separate work and love.

I can’t separate work and love.

I know what I want.

I don’t know what I want.

Laughter and light.

Sadness and dark.

I don’t like one night stands.

I could like one night stands.

My heart is not for sale.

My heart is open for business.

I’m not a fuck buddy.

I could be a fuck buddy.

I am so much more.

I am all there is.

I want to be number one.

I don’t want to mean that much.

So I can learn to trust.

So I will never learn.

I don’t want to be second best.

I want to be what you want me to be.

I am worthy of love.

I am unworthy of love.

I want to be desired.

I don’t want to be desired.

I am a loving woman.

I am incapable of love.

I’m not an after-hours opportunity.

I am open all hours.

My time is precious.

My time is wasted.

I want to feel like I belong.

I don’t want to be here.

Not at someone’s beck and call.

On someone’s speed dial.

I’m not available for players.

I am available for everyone.

I have integrity.

I am immoral.

I want a partnership.

I don’t want a relationship.

Equality and compromise.

Selfishness and control.

I don’t want to feel alone.

I feel alone.

With or without.

Without or with.

I want to be independent.

I am co-dependent.

Choose my own lane.

Follow the leader.

I don’t want to settle.

I settle for much less.

When I deserve the best.

I don’t deserve any better.

I want to feel secure.

I feel trapped.

Relax and unwind.

Wound up like a spring.

I’m not someone’s distraction.

I am someone’s excuse.

Present not present.

Affect not effect.

I want to be happy.

I don’t want to feel good.

Spontaneously combust.

Slowly decay.

I don’t want to cry.

I want to smile.

No more tears for fears.

Lots of laughs and hope.

I want to be loved.

I am unloveable.

Expand my horizon.

Stay locked away.

I don’t want to be used.

I am a user.

I want a place to call ours.

I like my own space.

I can’t change who I am.

I could change if I wanted to.

I want it all.

I don’t want anything.

I am the kind of girl you take home.

I’m not the kind of girl you take home.

© Copyright 2020, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

The Venus Flytrap of Love

She fell for him.

She learned to feel ashamed.

Feelings; the dirty word for love, left her sitting in the dark on my balcony, stubbed out like a cigarette butt.

He had to go.

He learned to feel afraid.

Feelings; the Venus Flytrap of love, left him closing the door to my apartment, shut down like a stubborn ass mule.

Still.

Denial stole like a thief.

Feelings; think it would be easier to maintain a smile, but neither of them like bullshit or manipulation or lies.

© Copyright 2020, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Communiquè

Talking,

as you do when time permits

an exchange

of energy, pleasantries & psychic projections,

bouncing

between words, a soul searching

communiquè of sight & sound,

swirling intonations gauging

our airs & grace’s,

our ever-present mindful interludes

pausing between us

for breaths, eyeballing the silences

of our head & heart,

where we come together

& connect

sifting through all the bullshit,

of where we’ve been

who we are & when we first met,

picking

up the threads of where we left off

before we hug & wave goodbye again,

till next time.
© Copyright 2019, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Outlander

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Jamie Fraser.

The highlander of my wet dreams &

the epitome of Scottish manhood – the rise

of the Jacobite & the battle of Colloden,

ending it all.

/

That fiery red head fuels my desire, transporting me to Lallybroch.

I am the Lady Broch Tuarach arching her thawed back,

purring like a cat; her cream licked to perfection.

Jealous.

Her secret coveted, breathing pure unadulterated sex.

I stretch back and close my eyes, snatch

images of her glory box at the foot of my bed

replaying soundbytes,

over

and over,

running my fingers through locks,

strumming a frantic tune,

finding their way through crevices & folds; my highland landscape.

Such pleasure!

Tartan wool & kilt,

an 18th century romp & a battle for the heart.

/

But as always, English tyranny is never far from the scene.

Too many #Metoo moments and brutality stops everything in its tracks.


© Copyright 2018, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Baby, I Love Your Way

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I love you.

I love that you’re mine.

I love the way you light up a room with your presence and my heart.

I love the way you joyously cook for me and our friends; laughter combusting into spontaneous abundance.

I love the way you laugh and giggle and play the fool, running around the room screaming like a freaking fruit, with Snoop.

I love that you do your best with everything and everyone, everytime.

I love that your heart only wants to do good and focus on the future.

I love how you think positively about all of our obstacles and we work together to solve them.

I love your resilience and strength of character, even when times get tough – you find a way.

I love the way your face lights up when you plan a party, design a flyer and work the promo.

I love the way you DJ – making me and everybody dance, with huge smiles on our dials.

I love to see you in your costumes and watch you come alive.

I love seeing the happiness on your face when you achieve the almost impossible, frequently.

I love watching your facial expressions and that passionate rocking and rolling you do on your chair, punching your hands in the air, to your favourite songs.

I love the way you make me feel, holding my hand and casually putting your arm around me, no matter where we are.

I love how you give me a wake-me-up-call most mornings, and I feel your desire pressing against me.

I love the way you slip, and fall between my legs with that naughty, cheeky giggle.

I love the way you whisper in my ear and tell me I’m sexy and beautiful and how much you want me.

I love it when you kiss me for no reason.

I love your sexy swagger and smouldering eyes.

I love the way you make me Chai in the mornings, and/or a cigarette and we slowly wake up together.

I love watching you shine.

*

On any given day, you give yourself to me in all your authenticity, with love.

You are the most awesome, amazing, talented, sexy, loveable man I have ever had the pleasure to meet and call mine.

I dont know how long I’ve got you for, but the romantic in me hope’s you put a hippie ring on it and we mooch on into the future, forever.


© Copyright 2018, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

I Choose to Run

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“I think we’ve been put through the emotional wringer and there are only fraying threads left of the tapestry we once sewed togetherJD Butler

Just like me to need a pacifier when the going gets tough but

it’s not all about me.

You’ve changed – maybe we’ve both changed, but not for the better. You used to care if I cried but

not any more.

I guess you’re strung out, over-worked, under-paid, under-sexed and looking for a way out in your Red Dead Redemption II,

outback adventure.

Maybe you also feel trapped? What if I left, left the house for you to rent? I can go anywhere to live

and start again.

Sydney, Melbourne, Perth perhaps. 6 months here, 6 months there (in New Zealand). Reinventing myself

is what I’m good at.

Jezabel is never too far away for me to find a way to survive. She never leaves me or changes. I can count on her

to do the right thing.

I’ll miss you. Everything about you. How wonderfully beautiful you are with your deep dark brown eyes. You are talented, loving and rich beyond anything resembling money.

I consider

myself blessed.

It’s time I moved on. I’ve reached a point where I don’t think we can offer each other the best part of ourselves any more. I think I hold you back from your true potential.

I think you resent not seeing your friends as often as you would like – cultivate those

friendships and opportunities.

I think you would feel better with money in your own pocket. I want to see you happier, less frustrated,

less aloof and less distracted.

When I met you, you were larger than life, full of happiness, generosity, love. You were loyal to me.

I think we’ve been put through the emotional wringer and there are only fraying threads left of the tapestry

we once sewed together.

I’m distressed. I’m trying to preserve the last of my sanity in order, to survive.

I’m concerned. I want to give you as much as I can for you to feel secure. You’ve worked hard and

I have no intention of ruining you.

I’m not like my ex because I love you – he never did.

I don’t want to see you cry, or curl up and die inside,

but I still choose

to run again this time.

© Copyright 2018, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

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Photo by JD Butler

1.

Your love for me has already gone

& you don’t even know it.

I lie awake, tensing & untensing, reminding myself to breathe.

Numb.

I don’t remember what it feels like to be loved, lying next to you, rubbing your shoulders, listening to your faux sleep or nightmarish fits & starts.

I only ask you dont take my friends with you.

What little I have left that teeters on that ledge where I start again & you leave off.

Do you know what colour my eyes are? Know their depths & greys?

Do you know what keeps you close & yet so far away?

I don’t understand.

You give me so little to hold on to, I feel invisable but you seem to think the world owes you a favour & you’re mine.

I cease to exist.

I refuse to live.

I’ll take the scraps like a good little bitch – watch & wait for the next tasty morsel to fall onto the floor.

If this is what you need, I have no choice but to accept.

Throw me a bone every once in a while, when you remember not to forget.

2.

I’m being selfish.

You love me with all your heart. You’re working your skinny white arse off for me, for us & I’ve got you all wrong.

You can see into the future that promises money, hotel rooms, boats, fine wine & women but didn’t you already piss that up against the wall?

I’m jaded.

Am I really what you want, tucked away in the back of suburbia, barefoot, looking like a dyke in my short-shorts & singlet?

Age wearing me down where I just want peace.

I dont want to dance or drink or muck around with you knowing there’s nothing in it for me.

Oh but there is?

Did it only just dawn on you that what’s mine is mine & you either choose to accept this mission or it will self destruct in 5, 4, 3…

What have you got to worry about anyway? You can make money, friends, music anywhere.

Well I’m 50, a woman, unemployed, questionably sane & dubiously employable & up to my eyeballs in debt.

My options are limited & guess what – you’re it!

You don’t believe in marriage & I concur. You believe in hard work in love but no cigar?

Why do it all at all if you get nothing out of it?

Why are you here complaining?

What the fuck do you want from me, if this is not a game?

3.

I’m not sure I know exactly what I’m in for.
© Copyright 2018, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved