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

Working through Cobwebs

Image

image

Melbourne Street Art – Artist Unknown
Photographer: Jennifer Cox
Photo used with permission

I’m trying to work through cobwebs, he said,

with eyes pouring like rain
into a leaky boat
squaring off the shoreline
heading out to sea
avoiding Redbacks
like the plague, negotiating
rogue waves
behind his back
facing his fear; ex
tended arms pull
away – escape
for the moment.

he scans the horizon
left to right that sinking
feeling farther, closer
than he expected denial; a river in Egypt
too far away to row
a thunder clap into eternity,
Isis turning a blind eye
Triton dragging him
under, spinning
a vortex only Terra
firma can translate.

taking the bull
by the horns, he finds
solid ground wrestling
Taurus, knee deep
in mud that sticks
like shit on the inside,
cobwebs cling to hard
wired neurons
lodged in the gaps
in – between grey,
a matter for
black and white.

separate, facts find
fiction fornicating
in a web of deceit
by design, too lurid
for children like
Persephone – abducted
innocence; a metaphor
for rape, choking the Hell
out of life, all the while
pseudo affection bribes
a handful of lollies
to sweeten the blow.

I want everything to be saved,
he said.

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

Notorious

Behind My Apron Strings

Death by Cigarette

1.

“By God it’s good to see family when you’re sick!”, he beamed
arms o u t s t r e t c h e d, averted
teary eyes near
over
flowing

He really must be dying
I feel bad for him
& Him

who feels worse?
wounds are open now
exposed
affection weeping years

suppression/repression/aggression

he shys away from him
behind: behind my apron
strings
pull him toward me
I lean forward: toward
Him

too soon for hymns
but not too late

/

is this what it feels like to die?
to soften for once in your life?

2.

Do I have to wait
that long before I see
the next generation cry
before I
find something to be defensive about?

a fathers legacy

He feels sorry sad
& scared
I follow his every move
I watch Him from behind
corners

He has a lot to answer
He doesn’t know how to feel
the loss
not knowing; the baby
wanting hugs
finding joy in the smallest of things

He will be gone soon

Thy Will Be Done
& life
Will

/

He is not my father
he is my grieving lover
I shake their tears loose

© Copyright 2007 Jodine Derena Butler.  All Rights Reserved