Buttons without holes

Buttons
Buttons in my head
All of them stitched without a unbuttoning hole

Stitched like a consolation for freedom
Stitched in bright blue shades of faded conditioning

You think you can open them but as you draw closer
you see
they aren’t really buttons
They are decorations in place of your freedom
Stitched shut!

But this is not what you have made yourself become

Nature, nurture and choice
choice being on top
The tunic without any colour, simple white and honest
Is how we began

But
Today, it’s about the buttons

Yesterday,

The shirt was open and you move
move about your room,
the walls of your house
home to your mind

The edges flutter
the edge of the cloth
you dance, walk
you pause with no utter poise
you tip toe with the grace that lays no heavy pressures of gender

did not your childhood teach you that?
the older boy child would say “wear the skirt longer, it is more graceful”

But now
I am
Undressed, bare
all of it in one piece of a body;
grace and no grace
Bear with me, will you?
Shame is such a shallow word
and I feel none of it

Bare with me will you?

Buttons
I’ve never seen so many buttons on a dress
He hangs in my cupboard
I, wary of wearing it
have rejected it
tomorrow she must be taken to the tailor
and he, be a man or a woman will un- stitch them for me

Buttons
with holes

and my metaphor for freedom

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