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Posts Tagged ‘metal button’


Lord Tennyson said that in spring ones fancy turns to love, but I find that mine turns to adornment, sweetness and beauty. I have spent the day baking tiny ginger cakes, each pâtisserie a dollop of perfection wrapped in waxed paper and tied with a thin length of leaf green grosgrain ribbon to merrily distribute as springtime gifts. For my house-to-house cake excursion, I’m wearing fitted black leather 501s, harness boots, a cream ribbed turtle sweater, and a black velveteen jeans jacket with wagon wheel shaped, antique gold rhinestone buttons.
“In the Spring a fuller crimson comes upon the robin’s breast;
In the Spring the wanton lapwing gets himself another crest;
In the Spring a livelier iris changes on the burnish’d dove;
In the Spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.”

(From Locksley Hall by Lord Tennyson, 1835)

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Hearts, cupids, and lovebirds abound. Lulu and Francy are making sweet and longing cat-eyes at the fluttering pigeons outside, the cake-decorator at the corner boulangerie is distractedly piping passionate declarations of love on every pâtisserie, and even I feel a little spring in my step. I’m stepping out for flowers, and am wearing weekend spring finery consisting of a leaf green fine cotton lawn shirt with bronze heart buttons, worn 501s, brown cowboy boots, an earthy brown tweed jacket and a green suede cap.
She didn’t say yes
She didn’t say no
For heaven was near
She wanted it so
She wanted to act ad libitum
But feared to lose her equilibrium
So what did she do?
I leave it to you
She did just what you’d do too”

(By J. Kern, O. Harbach)

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It is a day of cultural subterfuge; I have packed Lulu and Francy into my largest rucksack for an afternoon at the museum. The exhibit at the Contemporary Jewish Museum is Curious George Saves the Day: The Art of Margret and H. A. Rey. I’ve been reading the exploits of Curious George every night to the fur monsters for months, and we are all much looking forward to the chance to see these brilliant illustrations in person. For my feline smuggling adventure and artistic foray I’m wearing attire that would make James Bond proud; a plum velveteen three piece Nehru suit with shiny dollar sign silver buttons, a cobalt blue silk skirt, a plum and yolk yellow dotted ascot, and blue suede cowboy boots. Whistling a tune, we leave the apartment for la grande aventure.
“Oh where are you going?’ ‘To Scarbro fair.’
Savoury, sage, rosemary and thyme
‘Remember me to a lass who lives there;
For once she was a true lover of mine.
‘And tell her to make me a cambric shirt,
Without a needle or thread or ought else
And then she shall be a true lover of mine.”

(Originally a traditional English ballad called The Elfin Knight)

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It is time for a full-moon ramble. I have packed a midnight snack of Meyer lemon-glazed Madeleines, a steel thermos of soupe à l’oignon gratinée, and chard stuffed with bulgur and feta cheese into my hand-made tin-can tiffin, and have securely fastened my worn leather saddlebags to my scooter. I am headed for the mountains and the ocean; I want to ride on winding cliff-side roads and end my journey with icy salt water at my feet. I’m wearing a three piece olive green corduroy suit lined in fuchsia silk and adorned with gold half-ball buttons, a heavy black ribbed woolen turtleneck, my worn black leather jacket, and black harness boots. As I zoom out of the city, I howling recite Hilda Doolittle into the damp night air.
“Whiter
than the crust
left by the tide,
we are stung by the hurled sand
and the broken shells.
We no longer sleep
in the wind—
we awoke and fled
through the city gate.”

(From The Wind Sleepers and by H.D.)

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I’m a gadabout slouching upon a park bench, and wearing a moth-eaten, louche brown wool suit. Three of my waistcoat’s seven, silver starburst buttons are hanging by threads and my oxfords are scuffed at the heels. My hair is disheveled, and my black felt fedora is tipped back. There is a crew of hopeful grey speckled pigeons at my feet, pecking at scattered breadcrumbs, while I smile a goofy grin. It must be love.
Cupid, draw back your bow
And let your arrow go
Straight to my lover’s heart for me, for me
Cupid please hear my cry
And let your arrow fly
Straight to my lover’s heart for me”

(By S. Cooke)

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I am lounging upon my récamier and playing a snail-paced game of solitaire. Snail-paced because every time I get ahead, Francy swats at my neatly organized stack of winning cards with her paw until they have spilled onto the rug in a deluge of royalty and peons. I have the “Black Lady” in my left hand, and the “The False King” in my right. If Francy can restrain herself, I might win yet. In a surprise move, Francy leans in over my shoulder and attempts to bite the four-holed antique gold button off my grey wool sweater. Playing cards with a one-eyed cat is always a gamble.
“They call you Lady Luck.
But there is room for doubt
At times you have a very unladylike way of running out
You’re this a date with me
The pickings have been lush
And yet before this evening is over you might give me the brush
You might forget your manners
You might refuse to stay and so the best that I can do is pray.”

(By F. Loesser)

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I’m deluged in a flurry of preparation for the Upcoming Year. I want to make firm resolutions, yet I’m drawn to my soft bed and slumbering cats like a heat-struck moth to a wavering, deadly candle flame. To counteract my lack of rectitude, I am stomping up and down the hall carrying towering boxes of unwanted clothing and knick-knacks to give away as I clean my home. Each lap down the long hallway is punctuated with a heart-felt intention for 2011; I will finish writing my memoir; I will travel Sognefjord, I will successfully tailor a Federal officer’s single-breasted frock coat with classic gunmetal buttons, and I will expand my repertoire of baked sweets. In the meantime, I take a break in my rust velvet upholstered Eastlake recliner to eat a slice of Crispy Mushroom, Potato and Blue Cheese Galette and drink a tall glass of sparkling mineral water.
Climb every mountain,
Search high and low,
Follow every highway,
Every path you know.”

(By Rodgers and Hammerstein)

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