Endings

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Set It Free

I don’t like endings.

I’d rather switch off
Nod and agree,
Even when it’s bullshit.

I don’t like the drama.

I’m a set-it-free kinda gal—
If it comes back
It was meant to be.

We all have to figure it out for ourselves.

© Copyright 2022, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

His Soul and my Insignificance

Neglect

In my dream I was a dog.

Some sort of mangy matted thing tethered to a rope and stake. Fragments of cracked bone and coagulated mud puddles, stuck to my fur.

In my dream

I saw the man come— he brought his cold black eyes and set his sights on me, hurled another bucket of slop at my feet and I wept.

In my dream

I saw through the black hole in his soul and my insignificance outshone the brightest star, even then I wore my existence well, shut my mouth and kow-towed, I became nothing more than a flea.

In my dream

I wore a collar and bore love just to prove that point I once knew before I disappeared into a maelstrom of mourning. Nothing left to give.

I am reminded of the wife beater singlet and mullet crop of men way back then, the stench of decay followed by assault and I know it’s only a matter of time before I die.

Still, in my dreams

I am honoured to be graced by his presence but in reality, I am worthless.

© Copyright 2022, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

The Slow Toll Bell

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Illaru at Night

I am dying.

My bones leach, ache

In my catatonic state and my mind

Drifts skew-whiff, a vagabond pilgrimage

Across the Never Never astral plain.

Final destination riding slipstreams and moon beams

To infinity beyond nightmares

Passing through spectre

Through astro fields

(wrought iron cages)

Through Aeon.

I am bed bound, Catholicism eyeing my orphan crib

Lined with soggy biscuits and cheap red wine

Remnants of a past life

Neglect, emaciated limbs distended malnutrition

Wormholes in my solar plexus

Infiltrating dessert.

I can see small babies kick—

Dung beetle’s all legs, flat on their back’s

Only half way there.

The slow toll bell calls my body, anchor

Illaru strained against the silver tide

Subsidence destined to reside

In Long Beach under night sky,

Piece meal.

Condor tempt me to stray

Death wish incubus prey,

I pray to an unknown Goddess in my final hour

She comes like Madonna,

Mary Magdalene leven Ishtar

And all I can do is wait

To be held in her warm arms.

I am dying.

My bones leach, ache

In my catatonic state

In my mind’s eternal damnation.

Eternal Damnation

© Copyright 2022, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

Holy Pizza

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Judas tosses my skin dough

kneading

Spread too thin

Wood fire burnt, ends

Encrusted mounds & blisters

Slough

fall

Tears another hole &

I become a meal;

A tv dinner deal.

At the last supper, Mary

Sings a hymn &

All the Angel’s

rejoice!

My veil lifted drifts

Chewed fingertips boxed in

Swallowed whole, followed by

An after-dinner mint & toothpick.

But what I really need is a good

stretch.

© Copyright 2022, Poetry Out West, Jodine Derena Butler. All rights reserved

The Ungrateful Bitch

My heart is breaking today. I want to die. I am all alone in this world, unloved and forgotten. I am breaking down in the moment surrounded by strangers and strange smells that have come barraging into my sacred space and pegged me into a corner. I don’t have the will to live anymore. I look for ways to end my life that doesn’t require umpteen steps to get there. I wish to just slip away in my sleep, in silence, in peace. There are spies everywhere. Pseudo friendships of users and manipulaters. Pretenders. I want to simply vanish, disappear without a trace knowing no one would ever call to find me and it will be as-if I never was. If I am a Goddess, it doesn’t add up. There is something inside me that fails to love or be loved. I must have been an angel once, but the universe has me outcast. I pray for my quick death but my whole life has been a slow grief stricken process of dying. I want it all to end. I visualise my soul manifesting in mist; graceful swirls arising from my lifeless body. Ascension taking me back home to timeless euphoria and relief. All I’ve ever wanted was to love and be loved but I am not worthy. None of us are. If life is a gift, I have been an ungrateful bitch.

But we all have down days. Poetry helps me to purge and heal.

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

Last Mile Home

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I feel like I’m on the last mile home. Everyone is gone. Although most people are just lost trying to survive.

I think about people, wonder how they are but I don’t really believe they care much. ‘Trust no one’, is being bandied about like Al Capone’s mandate in the Godfather but I’d rather have him on side than deal with the average Joe Blow shitcunt who’s self absorbed selfishness means it’s only a matter of time before they want something.

Everyone is just trying to make it through another night, live another day and create a semblance of paradise in their own backyard before they flip the bird for the last time.

I’m really struggling to make my ends meet. I can see no end and I’m getting older by the year. I find myself dreaming of the last mile home; the last death row to freedom.

Last Mile Home by Kings of Leon

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

I Am

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Lifting the Second Veil

I am

The High Priestess
Lifting the Second Veil

I am grieving

That I am
Invisible

That I am
Denied
Used & abused
Wounded

That I am
Powerful

That I am
Spiritual
Magnetic
Eternal

That I am
Goddess

That I am
The Medicine Woman
The Artisan &
The Determinatress

I am healing
My Akashic DNA

I Am

Akashic DNA

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

My Delirium

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My Delirium

My thoughts are a jumbled mess of confusion (yours, his, hers & mine) scrying for something to hold onto long enough to make sense of the anchors and foundations we’ve both forged from pain, which now threaten to cave in. There is nothing I can do but watch. You are the man. My dreams and cracked beams are giving way to violence — detachment and oblivion. Nothing will be left but a fully loaded house of teetering cards.

All I feel is loss.

The aftermath will have me face to face with Charon. He sits upon my chest now, opening up my third eye bidding me to say goodbye one last time. My soul declines, offering suffering in silence, compassion finding release in a steady stream and I overflow. My ears make wells to muffle his bargain but I belong to no one, not even him. I am a lost cause.

If I accept, demons could still tear me apart, dismember my appendages piece by bloody piece before sewing me back together skew-whiff, over and over again until I am utterly insane. Therein lies the abyss. The place that makes my life a living hell and all my heart aches for, is to love and be loved.

But all I feel is sadness.

Abandonment caves in my ribcage too. It digs in like a tick underneath my lungs and sucks every last drop of fluid left from my life. I am wrung out and strung out, so I waste no time in knocking myself out just to get lost — I wander in the ether to find her again and bring her back home but there is always a catch.

Twenty two foregone conclusions reek of tyranny. You can’t save me! I was lost before you found me and I don’t belong to you or them or here or anywhere and it will always be like this! I don’t want to believe in angels! I don’t want to believe in demons! I don’t want to live in this place!

There is another outburst of pain.

I seek comfort in my magic, my wand set to low creates slow circles that mimick your gentle touch. I feel pleasure for the first time since I last felt your gaze reach in to pull me out and into your Temple. You try to worship my foreign body, send ripples ricocheting between our vibrations but we have failed to find synchrony. In my delirium, I think I must have died.

All I feel now is grief.

© 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

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

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

Am I A Feminist?

1.

Am I a feminist?

I make the fantasy real for him, giving up parts of myself –

My look

My mind

My body

My heart.

Pieces of me, served up over silver platitudes,

three course meals

and French champagne.

2.

Malleable breasts and tight buttocks

reclaim their complimentary one half of the whole

reality

filling holes in Psyche every time she is alone.

Separate and connected,

happy and unremarkable

half truths, open to anyone who will listen.

3.

In her deepest recesses, she is compartmentalised – a waif, aloof.

Dissociation

learned to leave a long time ago, doing only what they wanted to make them happier

for the two of us.

A tragedy, waiting for a fairy tale ending that doesn’t involve

the death of Eros.

Instead she paints pictures that never quite get finished –

My pencils

My paints

My inks

My pastel chalks

covered in charcoal dust fingerprints,

scared of letting go.

4.

She still held on

to dreams

of Volkswagon beetles,

Austin land crabs,

Holden utes and XD Falcon

panel van’s reinforced with 6ml steel plates

pink stickered on the side of the road.

5.

I say goodbye to all the abusers –

My family

My friends

My lovers

My colleagues.

Self care now cloistered in her abandon while you watch,

published one day by some back shed press, captioned

‘Clichèd-Poet-Ends-It-All’

because forfeiture has no shame.

She was happier then

and then she died,

turning grey like her foibles and colourless lines.

6.

Am I a feminist?
© Copyright 2019, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Killing Heidi

Last night was a true clusterfuck.

This morning, she’s thinking about taking a class

Act

Flashbacks of a child making desperate promises she can’t keep

Pray

She learned there was no one who really cared

Naked

A victim of conditioned responses or lack thereof killing Heidi off

Halo

Inextricably separate, forever grieving the loss of her

Forgiveness

When all it takes is to swallow it down whole and roll

Die

Did Heidi know how much it hurt?
© Copyright 2019, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Heidi

Most Days

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“I’m in my garden planting, weeding or harvesting.” JD Butler

1.

Most days I want to die.

My heart breaks

over the most

stupidest of things.

My thoughts tell me I am not

strong enough

pretty enough

skinny enough

feminine enough

kind enough

friendly enough

sexy enough

compassionate enough

caring enough or

rich enough.

My brain tells me I’m too

moody

angry

sad

depressed

anxious

ugly

scared

fragile

emotional

weak

unpredictable

unstable

flighty

and fickle.

My brain tells me to think

the worst of every situation, interpret every thing as an

attack

snide remark

slur

corner

lie

deception or

ulterior motive.

I really shouldn’t take things so personally.

Others think I’m too

Sexual

Slutty

Useing

Abusing

Needy and

Crazy.

I guess

that’s why he told me I have no friends.

Most days I can’t stand it any more.

I’m too much of every thing or not enough.

I wish I was never born.

/

I’m ok on a good day, but I struggle. Demons,

in my waking hours, have a go at me for every-little-thing that ever was.

How, do I continue to survive?

Most days, I just want to die.

2.

Some days I feel happy.

content

pleased

proud

relaxed

calm

and secure.

I’m in my garden planting, weeding or harvesting.

And I think about what else I want to do.

Paint

draw

read

make

sculpt

weld

and create.

Money holds me back so I continue watering the garden.

Some days I feel optimistic.

I am convinced I’m going to get that job,

find that financial independence,

not go back to sex work although I miss it terribly.

Some days I don’t think about

pain

loss

fear

humiliation

rejection

or torment.

I’m numb, but at least I’ve stopped

shaking in my boots,

jumping all over the place,

looking around every 5 fucking seconds

or wanting to run.

Some days I feel hope that I won’t

take my life

end up on the streets

be alone and lonely

have no friends

have no lover

or find love.

Whats wrong with me?

I live with trauma, fuck up daily and behave like a bitch –

and I dont think I can be fixed

sometimes.

Some days I’m OK.

I smile

laugh

joke

play

make love

not war.

I try not to let the voices win. I try to

bite my tongue

shut my mouth

hold back tears

try my best

please my man

and stop complaining.

I try not to wait for the end, although I push everyone away – my deluded saving grace

is more likely cutting off my nose, to spite my face.

Some days I think I will survive.

But most days, I still want to die.

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

A Mummers Dance: Demeters Descent into Hades

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What will become of her?

The three Fates furiously pull Demeters hair / dragging resistance, weaving fistfuls of slate grey strands into knots through gnarled fingers. She struggles to break free.

Their mummers puppet, refusing to stay a decision, deciding that nothing can be done that hasn’t been done before.

Demeter in her craven mind, reluctantly resigns & begins her inevitable descent into death / succubus airs sliding down around those slippery steps like a mortal wound.

What terrible unknown awaits?

Letting go, becoming a ghoulish nightmare / a back-lashing monologue of regret that terrifies her waking hours leaving nothing else to be desired.

Oh the fury!

How ill-equipped her gaze, stripped bare of stippled ends & brushed strokes / all hope is lost, perished in the long-black-abyss of eternal sleep.

She remembers Persephone, in her full bodied beauty & wails at the indignity of brittle bones & a peeling river of flesh falling from her ancient body, with every maudlin step.

Demeter stumbles. Trips. Her fall from grace crash landing at her own feet / anything is better than another mask, in the pantomime of lifes abomination.

She finally meets Persephones gaze / a ravaged maniacal stare, steady amongst the carnage of after-birth strewn all about her.

There is no escape.

It’s here her malicious appendages thrash / manipulating moans & pathetic misery, chaos finally falling on deaf ears.

If the end must come, make it swift!

/

A hard, fast jolt into the after-life, where the ambrosia of a ravaged soul is drained from existence / that rancid elixir of a life less loved, can finally be laid to rest

& lost for all eternity.
© Copyright 2018, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Hard-wired

It’s a hard-wired

ephemeral life

I lead.

Half of me yearning.

Half of me mourning.

Desire

for a quick death,

overcome by the

monotonous grind;

clandestine,

dragging

it’s heels inching

forever forward

toward an unremarkable

destination.

Except for

that constant ache.

A low throb

moan between my

legs,

rising up & into

my belly, disturbing

the dying butterflies

there.

Oh to be blindfolded!

Black out spread eagled,

all solidified reminders

teased to know pleasure

for pleasures sake.

Played

like an object

of your imagination

& devoured

like a ripe peach.

I’m too old

for this shit!

Wanting

to just be loved.

No out-back

salt lakes to be found.

Slip streams

giving way

to an avalanche

in a classical black

& white silent movie.

It’s all too much

to take in,

the depravity

of age & of consent.

Too young, yet

too old to let

things slide.

Still, the tears come,

let loose

to chide & deride

my feminine critique;

that contemptible self

loathing that likes

to sink her

teeth in.

Heart

broken,

wanting for nothing

but life’s

simple pleasures

to sweep her

off her feet —

lead her into

an ecstasy of wanton

abandonment

for just one moment,

to still the voices

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

Nude

Persephone

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“Persephone never quite forgave injustice, but she did learn to shed her skin” JD Butler 

You came over larger than life, in all your big beautiful buxom-ness,

I got you naked.

My legs wrapping themselves around you like spider star’s, our flambuoyant embraces creating seismic ripples in our milky way.

When you weren’t whingeing about the cold – manifesting uncontrollable shivers & shakes, I watched your face smile like iridescent plankton sparkling in the moonlight; the ebb & flow of your once moored reserve.

You let it all hang out under cover of darkness, except for artificial red lights intermittently flashing, innocent for all of it’s risquè innuendos but oh so enlightening!

*

I don’t presume to know you intimately, although you remind me of Persephone – Hades having honed her fury, tempering Demeter’s mournful wrath all thanks to Hercate.

My third eye dived into your psyche, recognising myself in your reflection. Tidal waves of emotion crashed through and over, till I could see and you could see me.

*

Persephone never quite forgave injustice, but she did learn how to shed her skin & find rebirth in the spring,

bursting into wild rain.


© Copyright 2017, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Myth of Persephone & Demeter

Sympathy

The Great Love of My Life

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The great love of my life just walked away, for the last time

I fall in love with you every time I see you, preferring to forget your flaws

It was your smile, your cheeky grin ~ you’re looking up at me from under those lashes

I fear I would have you back in a heartbeat, if we were to meet again eye to eye

It’s the hardest thing, to choose what’s better for me, over my hearts desire

It would take years of reconciliation, together apart for the wound to heal to scar –

I think about it, us and you hoping, wishing, looking for bargains to bring us back

But it’s too late now

You left me four times, and I took you back; I could never trust a man like that

© Copyright 2017, Jodine Derena Butler & Poetry Out West. All Rights Reserved

Taper

I Still Believe in Twilight 

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Twilight

still, a gut wrenched
mixture of intensity

grief and deep joy
a juxtaposition of us

I was like Bella
you, my Edward

and I wasn’t afraid

in my dreams
I soared in my heart

till my heart stopped
diving into sorrow

my Edward morphing into Aro

*

I still believe in Twilight

even in your blatant disregard

I had my fairytale

Lady Jane had her way
shredding my heart in two

over a thousand years it would have killed me

tucked away under your tongue

under my breath 

where everything moved
so bittersweet

*

I still believe in Twilight
although it is all I have left

of you 

© Copyright 2017, Jodine Derena Butler & ‘Poetry Out West’, All Rights Reserved

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