Tuesday, August 27, 2013

out of the button jar

Once, before the advent of bottled water and a life that would implode without a cell phone, people saved buttons.

It was a homey chore, cutting the buttons off worn-out garments and tossing them into a jar against a time when there might be need for a button and, yes, you could sew it on all by yourself. The worn-out garment ended up in a rag bag ... for cleaning or polishing or Halloween costume masks or even a bit of creative art.

Once they enhanced or completed a given chore, but now the buttons are just a collection in a jar up on the shelf. They don't complain. And it's probably too anthropomorphic to say they wait: People wait; buttons just ... well, they seem to hang out.

Each morning, I sit down to write something, rustling around in the button jar for some newly-discovered bit of brightness or color as a means of enhancing or completing a chore ... reconfiguring what was once configured but then wore out.

But it becomes harder, somehow, to find the button that will attract my attention, let alone anyone else's. I'd like to write something bright and firm and well-sewn, but the buttons don't come to hand as once. They're there, all right, up on the shelf, but, well ....

Here I sit, writing about buttons.

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