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(C) 1999 Elaine Ingalls Hogg

Elaine Ingalls Hogg


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Published in the Island Times July 1999

The Button Box

The Button Box
By Elaine Ingalls Hogg, 1999
She stood in the doorway and looked at the room,
with the water stained walls and the weavers loom.
A lace spider's web so intricately spun,
reflected the rays from the afternoon sun.

Long shadows cast across the old plank floor.
Paint chipped and peeled around the frame of the door.
The warmth of the home, that once was here;
The scene of abandonment brought a quiet tear.

Was there nothing left of her childhood past,
A symbol, a memory, on which to hold fast?
She wanted to know of her ancestors, dear,
Who lived lives of courage and godly fear.

And there on the shelf sat a blue toffee tin,
Her grandmother's button box, guarding memories within.
She found round blue buttons from Grandpa's old coat.
A faded yellow picture and a handwritten note.

Dull copper pennies, and pink kidney pills,
Two pearl hatpins and prescriptions to fill.
Each item, whether garters, or buttons or comb,
Told a story of the people who once called this "Home".

Keys, cuff links, small treasures of lives in her past,
The box held the memories on which to hold fast.