What does it mean?

What are buttons? What is their function on a garment, a radio, a telephone, a motor? How does it relate to this blog?

On a garment, a button keeps it closed, keeps what is underneath protected, and hidden. A button is the first line of defense against anything that hurts, intrusions, and unwelcome attentions.

It does not shield but it makes it possible to cover.

It does not lie but keeps the truth from showing itself.

A button allows nakedness and therefore vulnerability—to remain veiled.

The radio button pours

information or misinformation

and a jumble of disinformation.

It changes my mind, molding and training it.

It turns on music and cuts it off.

Dance or not?

All a matter of decision, choice,


Buttons are often constricting

they interfere with

breathing, moving, bending, dancing, living

and often, loving.

The main button on a machine gets it started.

You push, it works

and does the job the apparatus was made to do;

it functions, it fulfills the expected, nothing more.

It’s programmed.

Buttons on a telephone reach out for a connection to

a voice, a heart, a soul, a mind.

There is someone at the other end…

What happens when we reach a robot?

We want to hang up or shove the 0 button for some homo sapiens.

The point of touching 7 buttons is

to reach someone we know.

We want to, no, we need to, talk.

We need, no, we crave understanding;

there is a sharing that must be done through words both  spoken and heard .

We reach out to an other by pushing buttons.


When you push my buttons I disconnect from what we share,

I retreat; I get angry;

I am hurt; I don’t listen;

I am afraid.

Buttons allow me to survive the unbearable disconnect

from what is other,

when all I hunger for is to be part of that other,

To matter.

Buttons enable dissimulation and camouflage to survive the pain

that leaves us hollow, bleeding, spilling out, gasping for breath.

One button to each scar.

This is a place to unbutton, undo, let go

of the shield so carefully hammered,

the corset so carefully laced while…

living, coping and denying.

We forget little, we just store stuff away and get used to it

behind buttons.

The unshed baggage that we carry around

changes posture, attitude, walk, mindset,

and shapes us into creatures so different from

what we dreamt of becoming, of doing, of being.

Our buttoned up selves are safe but undone.




Unbearably starved.

When do we unbutton?

When we feel safe

When we want to be comfortable

When we are vulnerable but don’t care



Day dreaming



What if we could unbutton and speak freely

That is, without fear

Of judgment,






And be heard?

What if I could

Unbutton my shirtsleeve

And wear my heart on it?

What if I/you could say

I love you

I want you

I am hurt

Love me

And you/I accepted it?

Would I/you hear it?

Would you/I want to?

Unbuttoned or undone

It’s all us in fury

anger, pain, passion,

joy, jubilation, love…


so much love it hurts

to be.

About emmylgant

Cloud watcher and dreamer sometimes wise, often foolish, but I am what I am.
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2 Responses to Unbuttoned

  1. This is some pretty deep stuff you have here. Don’t mind me, I am starting from the very beginning. Just from this small start I can see that I am going to have some very interesting reading ahead. You obviously have been trained in the field of writing somehow. Me no training, actually barely able to convey my thoughts, ideas etc.


    • emmylgant says:

      I have been writing all my life. When I was 9 I wanted to write stories and fairy tales! So you are looking at what happens with practice? I don’t know. I just write. It helps me get through the crappy stuff, and God knows we wade in it.
      Just write what you want and what you know. It’s your voice that matters; it’s your story that no one but you can tell. So keep on scribbling.; we’ll keep on reading.


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