Falling through life…
panic and strife…
can’t believe I’m in this situation again…
can’t believe I’m in so much pain…

I ask myself why
as I ponder times gone by
how could I have ended up here again
sitting alone in so much pain..

Is the lack of sleep
the scars the cuts
they run so deep
is it my demeanour
or is it just me

Maybe I can run
build a new life that’s more fun
that’ll make me happy
I’ll leave it all behind..

What if it’s me
maybe I’ll ask
but what if they agree
what will I do

Run from myself
that’s just stupid
not again….
not the pain..

Stop hurting me!

Copyright  © 2010 Rhys Adams

Rhys Adams is 30 years old and currently lives in the South Island.  His poetic inspiration stems from living like a gypsy for a few years while he travelled around New Zealand to find himself.  Rhys has suffered from depression and anxiety since he can remember.


Life Dancing in a Rear View Mirror

I’m a double-edged samurai sword in a pregnant tsunami,
a conundrum, an atheist, a monotheist.

I apply a three blade razor to a two-year stubble,
the mirror coated in more blood than an erupting aorta,

Touching the pain of passing, I eat daisy chains
constructed from barbed wire fencing and knitting needles,

when a reality check finds me eating dried apricots
to cure the cancer I caught from just being alive.

I bite back fear, obliterate mind numbing memories,
and place carefully on a rough round dining table, souls

that have been hung out to dry on a windless day,
the irony, cooling on a line where clothes haven’t been for months.

I suck Lollipops with bad teeth, bad vibes and a very bad breath.
The dustman empties my outtake weekly, the rest I keep,

and so the Sword of Damocles cuts deep,
my face bleeding with the pain of despondency.

The dark annals of my writing echo my living thoughts,
and those reading my dying thoughts will cringe.

They didn’t help me – families, the depth of my ache,
several children who don’t ring, siblings who squabble.

I pass my memory to the volumes of poetry I have written,
my knuckles bare from years of chagrined living.

Succinctly, I approach the sunset of life, the sword gone,
just painted visions of a life lost in a missing rear view mirror.

Copyright © 2010 Thane W. Zander

Thane Zander has lived all over New Zealand, either as an itinerant child (Father moving to jobs from deepest south to farthest north) or as a 27 year veteran in the Royal New Zealand Navy. He was struck down with Bipolar Disorder in 2000 and has since moved “back” to Palmerston North and environs. The onset of Bipolar Disorder also heralded his entry into the poetry world, and from 2000 to 2005 he had written around 250 poems. This accelerated from 2006 to well over 1000 poems, and counting.

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 CurtisJoy 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

Jodine Derena Butler grew up on various farms all over the North Island of New Zealand.  She now lives in Cairns, Queensland, Australia with her husband.  She has two adult daughters and three grandsons.  Her poems have been published in Side Stream, Blackmail Press, Live Lines Anthology, Tracks Magazine and others. She has a background in social work and mental health and loves to dabble in the Arts.