Patricia Horn O'Brien

When Buttons for Sale Were Sewn onto Paper Strips and We Walked to Work and Time Flew

February 4, 2018


New York City circa 1960s










Leaves flew. Snow. Rain changed

the street to an angry stream. 

Or sad.  Our boots or soggy

shoes pressed us on. 

Come on!  Come on! 

And on we went,



the low window beside our flying feet,                         

grimy with every season of our flying by,

that grabbed our fleeting glance to frame for

those of us who deigned to look askance, the woman

bent over the reckoning of paper strips upon which she


sewed buttons she’d culled

and polished, culled and

polished, culled

and polished


while all the while leaves flew. The snow. The rain rained.  Sun came.  Leaves flew …                









 Patricia H. O’Brien, OSPL

                                                                                                                                   February 2, 2018


Please add a remark on this poem and/or to post your own poem or your favorite poem about buttons.  We’d love to see you here!




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