A response to a poem by Holly

Dear Holly,

The buttons on my sweater
strain at the thread, promise to bare
my heart, leave me unfettered

in a world of burly, leather-
clad men who stare
at the buttons on my sweater.

I’ve never been a ‘come-hither’
kind of woman–I’d rather
my heart stay unfettered.

One night of heated touch on feathered
pillows, and my fingers close with care
the remaining buttons on my sweater,

now tense from coming together.
I doubt I could ever prepare
my heart to leave me unfettered,

to open up its folds, consider
taking up the dare¬
to loosen the buttons on my sweater,
to freely bare my heart, unfettered.


I love playing around with forms. This one is a villanelle. Thanks, Holly, (Lost Kite) for the great image of the straining buttons, and for the idea to use the image as a metaphor for internal changes.