Check Mate

Photographer/Headpiece/Makeup by Andreas Boldt

You went back to the old ways, baby
let those speak for me, on their behalf
poisoning your mind and self
to bring you back home, tethered
to that place you’ve been trying to leave
you let them whisper in your ear,
sweet nothings to woo betrayal,
the only thing you trust
you’ve gone full circle
fear taking what was good for you
over love held in contempt,
lust luring you back again
already screwing you
now they’re trying to screw me
with phone calls, designer texts
intimidation sending me
into undercover, in disbelief
believing you have a hand in thuggery
you were so protective
of me, once family
willing to sell it all to the Devil you know
sending them all away
but they have your head in a vice
that false prophet Halo
surrounding you in darkness; checkmate,
stealing more than just Mary’s soul
you are weak, following
in your fathers footsteps
the one closest to you, the first
learned her place underfoot
her escape futile, her existance
cruel penance for that lost child
proving her guilt
she accepts her fate, now
that’s why she turns a blind eye
allowing your atrocious behaviour
to go unchecked – you raise your voice,
she see’s him in you and resigns
I have fallen by the way
learning to let go of my heart,
my mortality reminds me daily
that I am alone
I look forward to other things, now
bringing fulfillment here,
my father in his Twilight
where I can care for love
without risk, losing it all
the best part – his death
teaching me everything else
I need to know

/

one day, I hope
you sneak back into my bed,
just because you can and
we have an hour or two
to ourselves, like it was before
remembering our smell,
feeling our hearts open
loving each other well, adjusted
until the next time we say goodbye
and life goes on

© Copyright 2016, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Pan

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I could never look
at you the same way
I adored you, once
your true colours have me
in sensory overload
clutching my heaving chest
in shock, disbelief left winded

reeling from the blows
taking such pride

inflicting pain, deliberately
fueling retribution over lack
of supply, shows me I never knew
you – you who would do anything
for me, except love me
finding unjustified reasons
to hurt me

because I don’t abide
I could never trust

the man that revels in pain
his empowerment borne
plotting, scheming manipulations
splitting love in two
my aorta left to bleed
out, powerless –
it makes him feel

like a man
you’re not my man

I was your meal ticket
your way to escape
demons; Dachau passing down
suffering, such a way of life
completely misunderstood
cruel Nazi mentality, heartless
your Mockingbird,

your SS badge of dishonour
worse, using children

an apparatus for torture
where love nurtured trust,
spiritual guidance squandered
on self-serving childhood needs,
your own metered out
shortcomings
love is not yours to ridicule away

denying its abundant existance
I will never trust my heart,

expose her soft underbelly
or offer her up
in sacrafice; like a lamb,
your God is a manmade
fallacy designed to subjugate
misogyny, displaced whores
render Madonna complexes

in perpetual conflict
I am disappointed in you

you had it all, proffered up on a silver platter
wanted for nothing, except coveted jealousy
lusting after sinful greed
you let breed and wreck havoc
Mr Black is a predator, a perpetrator
you let run roughshod over me
I am not the only one, women

your past is predictable by nature
I hope with what’s left,

you learn your lesson well
I wanted a man – a man,
not a spoiled little boy
throwing tantrums to up
the Antichrist in pursuit
of misspent youth,
ungrateful to the core

matters let go out of hand
I am in Hell

sent there to rot in your abandon
but you didn’t bargain on meeting Demeter,
who will hunt you down
to save herself, mourning winter
the long days and sleepless nights,
haunting your nightmares

she, who see’s right through you
will dance on your grave

 

© Copyright 2016, Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved

Pan

Malady Peg

Image

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Artist: Unknown

You build a picture of me
outside the elongated square –
peg shaped box
I find myself circling

each single step
widens following
two side steps lengthening
nearly five decades deep

before I’m back in the shit
standing in front of the same scale
stained window or solid Oak door
or Samsung S4

my self imposed barricade
chain and key close
to my heart safe, keep
trusting no one

except a chain gang
of miscreants and misfits
mulling over life just right
subliminal messages

only those in the know can
decipher wisdom in code, words
biting off more than we can chew
at times, like these

you help build a picture of me
outside the elongated square –
peg shaped box
I find myself picking apart

with my fingernails, prying
into cracks like an un
suspecting little upstart
who has everything and nothing

we are social creatures
by nature, nurture featuring ways
to stray outside our four walls
where I space out

dependent distance, my avoidance
keeps my heart still beating
any attempt to heal, an affront
my demons wreck havoc

threaten to cut me off at the knee’s
if I don’t conform or dance
to the Pipers tune. my malady
freaks the Hell out of everyone

torture held captive

you are a picture of my self
outside my elongated square –
peg shape box, my reason
to die respectfully

circumnavigating
ways through and around,
bashing my head up
against invisible walls

that thwart my existence
here, questions unanswered
philosophical paradoxical paradigm s;
the meaning of life and death

I want to go home,
listen to the ebb and flow
of waves, seagulls and sand
crunching between my toes

and decide if I want to live.

© Copyright 2016, Jodine Derena Butler & ‘Poetry Out West’.  All Rights Reserved

Mutation Sea – Lost Sea Souls

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Collaboration poems by Juan M. Santiago León and Jodine Derena Butler

(FOURTH/FINAL) SPANISH AND ENGLISH TRANSLATION COLLABORATION

Mutation Sea

1. I think
of remembrances
that I don’t want to avoid.

Desperate waves.

2. I fight
against my brother’s gentile heart
winning softness,
competitive happiness.

3. Caronte’s travel

It comes, Death towards us 
as a black and white film
in which once there was Love.

4. Listen

You told me beautiful stories
that filled our hearts with Joy
and eyes with feeling.

Relieved you read
that Amity kept alive,
then we could say goodbye.

5. Come in
you once said to me.

After that
I received your grace and blessing.

Everything would be given to you
although you were wrong.

6. Walk away

Be grateful for all they have given
pray with no shame,
it’ll be your healing.

I shall see you on the horizon,
a shadow running after –

7. I disappear.

By Juan M. Santiago León & Jodine Derena Butler (English Editor)

” I agree with you [Jodine, that] spanish is more romantic or passionate language, like all the latin languages are [but]… English, like other germanic languages, has a special power… [It] is a language able to call upon the forces of nature”. Juan

“I absolutely love the poems, in all their forms! You have an exceptional talent Juan, for interpreting and translating poetry from English to Spanish and vice versa. Beautiful! I have enjoyed working with you so much, that I am inspired to experiment with other languages (German, French, Polish, Russian). I think we can both feel proud about our beautiful poetic creations. Thank you”. Jodine

(THIRD/FINAL) SPANISH TRANSLATION

Perdida Alma Marina

1. Pienso
en recuerdos que no quiero evitar
Desesperado reflujo.

2. Lucho
contra el gentil corazón
de mi hermano,
suavidad ganadora
competitiva felicidad.

3. Viaja
y se acerca nuestra muerte
en blanco y negro
película
en la que una vez
existió el amor.

4. Escucha
me contabas bonitas historias
que nos daban alegría;
con ojos llenos de emoción
aliviado leías
que la amistad viva se mantenía
así fue posible decirnos adiós.

5. Ven
me dijiste una vez
después
recibí tu gracia y bendición.

Yo te lo daría todo
aunque tuvieras otra opinión.

6. Marcha
agradece lo que te dieron
reza sin ningún pudor
es tu curación.

En el horizonte me verás
de una sombra correr detrás

7. Desaparezco

By Juan M. Santiago León

” [It is] such a hard job [in] translating poems, because the point is not only the rhyme, the rhythm, but the sense…but it’s just another poem. And my translation of another poem is another another poem, so far from the former version in english, with another sense in spanish. Curious…” Juan

“Awesome Juan…I literally tried to capture the essence of your attempt to write [a poem] in English [for the first time]. I love seeing the Spanish version and I like the numbering…It is truly beautiful to see the poetry transform. You are quite right. Translations create poem after poem… the Spanish language is so much more romantic in my view than English”. Jodine

(SECOND) ORIGINAL ENGLISH INTERPRETATION by Jodine Derena Butler

Lost Sea Souls

Thoughts

Memories from moments
Avoided to forget
But I remember
Despair

Fight

My brothers gentle heart
I let softness win
Competititive
Happiness

Journey

We approach our death
Black & white re-runs
Love existed
Once

Listen

You told me beautiful stories
Memories made joyous
Emotional eyes
Reading
Relief
Our friendship
Made my feelings alive
It’s much kinder to say goodbye

Come

You said to me one time
I received your grace

Blessed

I would give anything freely
Although you think
Opposites

Leave

Be grateful for what was given
No shame in prayer
Healing

You’ll see me on the horizon
Running after a shadow
Dissappearing

By Jodine Derena Butler

“I will send back my version of your poem…” Jodine

(FIRST) ORIGINAL SPANISH TO ENGLISH POEM by Juan M. Santiago León

Head out of the sea, floating soul

Think ´bout this :

a memory is coming to you at this moment
and you cannot avoid it
you want to forget but…
…but you can´t do it, can´t want to
because that memory is the only thing you keep
and out of it
it remains none at all.

Beat it :

The soft fight against your bro´
a competition that you´ll never win
but you always let him
because it´s glad to see the happiness
in his face.

Walk along :

An end is approaching to us
movies from other era
where it still existed love.

Listening beautiful stories made us better ones
reading emotion inside your eyes
makes me feel alive.

To share my relief with you, my friend
is a kind way to throw away.

Come with me :

As you said once,
I receive your grace
like blessed people do.

For me, anything is easy
although you think the opposite.

Exit :

You must be grateful for all the given
if you are ashamed for praying,
let your feet be watered by waves.

In the horizon, you´ll see a figure running out
follow that shadow until dissapear.

By Juan M. Santiago León

“… this first try of writing a poem in english directly, it is not a translation. Maybe it’s an exercise, an attempt”. Juan

Common Threads

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‘Tapping in’ by Jonathan Solter

I’m nearly fifty, but I feel nigh
on ninety on a bad day.

This past week has been absolute
Hell on earth.

I’ve been triggered back
to being a child.

Losing her felt like losing
innocence; myself years ago. 

Traumatized, I thought
about ending it all.

The relationship.

But to my credit, my common sense intervened, giving me a serve. 

My man became a man in my eyes.
Not just another man.

Not just any old man.
My man.

Trauma has an ugly side;
it brings people to their knees

where they may as well be pissed on while their down there.

I am so worried for her…

/

How to reach me in that state, is almost futile. 

Almost.

I hear them knocking, butting their heads up against my wall, the double

thick English brick kind; multiple layers of insulating red. 

I pretend it’s nothing more, nothing less. 

“I don’t care”, I resign.

But then my beautiful man drew,
drawing me a shoebox.

Explaining how pain lives, dies
and re-lives inside my brain.

Overwhelmed with grief, I lift the lid
crawl inside and relive my dark past

over and over. Ashamed. 

He lifted my chin, to meet his gaze.
He held me. Loving me more

in that one single moment, I trusted.
“It’s no good” he said.

/

At the 11th hour, we failed. Let down, we had no voice. Mute

blind, deaf and dumb in one single sentence.

The system of things is definitely flawed. 

Corrupt?

That would be making an unjust statement. 

For those in the hot seats, forced
to call the shots, know many lives

are at stake. It must take its toll.
But I have no sympathy.

Our truth was not heard. 

Our fatal flaws not even our own; her
actions (or lack there of), denied.

A resounding ‘NO’ echoes through
my shriveled neurons finding dead

ends. My synapses have nothing
left to ignite. 

My family are in shock. 

My family was slit right down the guts; entrails threatening to turn us inside

out. We were split.

/

Here in our beloved home away from home.

He said, “you cant carry the torch
all on your own”. 

He said “I can’t watch your fire fade to black, your candle flicker in the wind”.

Sinking

deeper into that hole; my abyss dragging me into its darkest depths.

Broken. 

I could no longer hold my fractured pieces together. 

In my mind I dispersed like a million stars on a clear night. 

/

My self died a little bit more that day.

In my room with four walls,
no windows, no doors and no light

my world ceased to exist
and everyone in it.

It’s time to let go, heal.

He gave me hope.
understanding beyond anything

I have ever experienced
through years of therapy

1.  PROBLEM: Being torn.

I think of my beloved stepdaughter.
Everyday.

2.  INTAKE:  Its difficult

coming to terms and all that
that entails I cannot reconcile.

3.  PROCESS: Grief

Pain \ Anger / Trauma \ Up / Down
bracing \ myself for a hell ride.

Depression.

4.  STRATEGISE: Break –

down my past, hurt and forge ahead.
Gathering strength, wisdom and hope.

5.  EXECUTE: Eat.

Drink (water). Rest. Cry. Garden. Bathe.
Write to heal, even when my body

wants to heave. 

/

I look after my family.
Nigh on three years now in my own

special way. Not in a traditional way. 

I’m a hopeless cook.
I don’t appreciate housework.

I’ve been neglectful at being
the proverbial ‘good’ housewife.

My desire to grow flowers, fruit
and vegetables is my compromise.

Growing something edible to put in
the kitchen – for someone else to cook.

I hold us all together in many ways. Focusing on her safe and sound.

Consistent.

Loving, gentle kindness; watering
our gardens together.

/

Our home is beautiful.

Everyone finding that remembered
piece of themselves there; a sense of

belonging my own children lack. 

I want them to say, “I’m coming home”.  I want my beautiful, bitter, twisted

naive, angry children to come home too – to me and my family. 

It’s ever too late to love
and to be loved in return.

/

Finding trust again – she is as resilient as I am loved, unconditionally.

We watch the sun rise and marvel
at the light that shines on all of us.

I will learn to forgive but never forget.

I tend the earth, ripening my fruits
finding pride in nurturing my love.

I read. A cuppa, kiss and a cuddle regenerate my dreams. 

I wake with no nightmarish thoughts,
finding only more I can do to make

my garden grow. Knowing she is being
loved all the while.

/

Right now I need peace.

I love my family. Jason, Madison
La Donna, Whisky, (Carmen), Karmin

Leisa, Seth, Harken and Ronan.

Still too young (bar one) to see
the wood for the trees or realise that

not all flowers smell delightful – except the Rose.

/

The world doesn’t owe me a God damned thing.

My children will learn a much harder lesson than I.  

I forgive them, and I always will, over and over.

The thing about trauma is that it can only hurt us if we let it.  

I refuse.

/

(Myles will remember he said something similar.)

I hope you are smiling wherever you are my friend.

© Copyright 2015, Jodine Derena Butler, ‘Poetry Out West’.  All Rights Reserved

Miasma Rose

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my foetal body holds
nervous balls of Fear
tying themselves into knots
that make my stomach retch –
remembering a time before

my world collided everything
became fission; an existential
explosion of pieces of me
scattered

for a moment I lost my self

loving more
than my desire knows
escaping those merciless depths
drowning me
that miasma of Fear rose
letting go tears

what was once mine
forever stolen

its hard to breathe
here & now my Fear rising
its ugly head penetrating
only a fraction / friction culminating
in pitiful attempts to mollify

comparing my voice to yours
once more scolded, Fear
beyond measure
gulps for air
winded

wishing for all it’s worth
for more – more than life itself
to find peace & love

to seek out that softest place
our Eden here on earth
my beautiful self in your arms
our fruit ripening my garden

she remembers
being pulled this way – that
curtain calls still fall – still
I managed to climb
that long steep drive

her body of evidence
a sixth psychic sense

she is alone Daddy
14,000 years in advance
mister black burns
& black backs down

magic raises her up, my Crone
fragrance budding
watching her blossom
where she will become

Trials & tribulations
wax & wane

Karma will knock you off your feet
no stone will be left unturned

you will have no choice but to cut
off your nose to spite your face

I foresee Death
Charon jigging a jig
my wicked sense of humour
rejoicing

rotting in Hell for all eternity

© Copyright 2015, Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved

Interstellar Medium

Orion Constellation

1.
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

2.
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

3.
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

4.
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

REBLOGGED on Ink & Quill

Dibb

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when I was born
I was an orphan.

illegitimate problem child
doted & despised

promises were made
& broken

carpets were pulled
knives were drawn

ashes & best wishes
dead & buried

I don’t belong to him or her
or them,

they
look
down
their
noses

& their favourite lie
is snivelling

Dibb

© Copyright 2010 Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved

Demeter & Persephone

Demeters world is falling apart
she enters the tomb
leaving behind every last bit
of skin and bone

her heart, jagged little pieces
tears, condensed salted earth
her spirit as dark as Hades, ashen
her womb, a barren undergrowth of loss
her voice, a howling banshee
sevenfold

Persephone revisited in dreams
her escape futile, Hades whispers
she runs, never holding on nor looking back

dismembered dissociation awaits
those who fail
while cadaverous limbs are discarded
fertile appendages flail
her pieces crumble to dust

Demeter withdraws her love
only to find a serpent tongue
suckling at her breast

Demeter descends, Persephone awaits
her chamber the great unclean
unashamedly devouring our lost souls

Demeter falls to her knees in despair
death is just a figment, and life
here is just a memory

she breathes in the rancid air,
the smell of a distant pyre
she kisses the hand that feeds her

there are only fools here in paradise.

Copyright © 2009 Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved

Family

Christmas with family at lunch.  loved
ones in spirit present. noticeable
some of us not our usual selves. all of us
a couple of weeks and months ago
father, mother, uncle, aunt, cousin
brother, sister, husband, wife, lovers.

love is in the air with a sombre undertone
changing and evolving.  stronger
softer holding on
our spirit’s enquiring gently.  hearts
like cedar louvres
blissfully breathing
lots of hugs and kisses
lots of smiles.

bull mastiffs lap attention unknowingly
giving of themselves.  more
a small child asks for help to go wee’s
as children do.  nona
chuckling as she leads her by the hand.

teenagers frolicking in the pool.  glorious
unfettered minds and bodies celebrating
organic feijoa wine freshly squeezed it seemed.  ripe
the sun in all of us.

pockets of people mingling.  glasses
raised and table laden.  giving thanks
quietly un-quiet mouths, eyes ,ears, skin
and something else.  savouring
sustaining the living and life.  gone
but not forgotten.

© 2008 Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved

Happy Faces

So this is what it’s come to
distant memories of innocence
lost long ago
memories relived, mistakes
my undoing, all played
out on life’s stage

you’re out there miles away
untouchable, I tell myself
over and over where I’ve gone wrong
it’s too much for the bravest,
I’m not
I know what they’re thinking

I hear it in my head
like a broken record, jumping
over lines.
I look for ways out,
ahead of my future
there is no parallel universe

in my world
just constant reminders
of what I fail to become
and could have been
if it weren’t for me
I am swimming to stop the sinking

feeling, dragging me
down.  it would only take one gulp
one backward sigh of relief
to make it all go away
I never do anything by halves
I am no saint

no martyr for a greater cause
I leave behind everything
that ever was
they could never understand
what I know is my truth,
my world

I don’t belong here anymore
than the rest of us
but you don’t complain
if I could reach out and touch,
the sky, I would
melt away, floating my drops

I trace tracks with my finger
down the window pane
my happy face
smiling back at me

(in memory of Ian Curtis, Joy Division – D.O.D, 18th May 1980.  The birth of New Order.  The 2007  movie release of Ian’s life and times is called Control)

© Copyright 2009 Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved

Windows

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 at the rsa with nana soon when the results come back outside the window I remember climbing back in easier than outward appearances and a lot quieter than at night with the still crisp morning light over before it had begun again ahead of its time at breakfast with sweet leaf toast I was fifteen and I liked danger when the grass was much sweeter than the mescaline and the sex of two young lovers defying gravity on the window ledge of lust giggling and groping for the branches scraping the side of the house beside the hole giggling because I might catch the altered perspective and succeed with silence impossible with the teapot pouring I remember the pink bedspread sneaking into something paling by comparison more like crimson and stained like the window he once said to me but could not decide what it was about when the window slammed shut and I was angry for a moment  the front door was easier than tiptoes being bruised seeming to yellow past the bedroom door and the feathers were warm and soft cocooning them in embraces when I smiled I could hear their listening thoughts I remember the days when chairs sat in reclining positions side by side rocking by the fire looking out onto the front window like a doorway a much bigger window than mine was wiser than the cactus planted on the side of the road in season the windows were necessary to see into the future and the night and the teapot arrived as expected when I sat up in bed…

© 2007 Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved