Apr '12 23
It's number 23 in this poem-a-day project.

Yesterday I went to the launch of Thread me a button, a poetry collection by my lovely friend Jude Aquilina and Joan Fenney.

That inspired today's poem, which could do with being stashed in a tin along with a musty collection of buttons for a while, but here it is, all shiny.

For the love of buttons

I went to the launch of a book about buttons,
poems in a red-covered book about buttons.
There's more to these simple fasteners
than had ever met my fingers.
I heard poems and stories
about buttons for political campaigns,
about fanciful buttons garnishing Mesdemoiselles,
about locket buttons concealing tiny compasses,
about box buttons smuggling drugs,
about buttons engraved with cryptic messages,
about buttons made from animal parts,
about garlands of charm buttons on silk string,
about buttons for baby booties, wedding dresses, funeral wear;
delicate yet capable
buttons snipped from histories
and wearing a feminine diversity,
unlike the engineer-designed zipper.

Posted by Jennifer Liston

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  1. Mike says:

    *Well done J.L. Love the "buttons snipped from histories", and the final line is nicely ambiguous ( or do I mean it can be interpreted in more than one way?).
    In the home straight.

  2. Jen says:

    *Thanks MH, yes the final slippery slide; I don't like wishing my life away but I am looking forward to day 30. ;-)

  3. Jen says:

    *How cool and timely: Google's just told me that today is zipper inventer Gideon Sundback's birthday! :-)

  4. Mike says:

    *That's uncanny.

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