More of the gender issue: I remember talking to a poet whom I greatly admire but who made me feel kind of tongue-tied when I was first in NYC. He asked me about Tender Buttons and the concept behind it. I tried to explain the association I had from Luce Irigaray's concept of multiplicity in "The Sex Which Is Not One" to the visual link I saw between Joe Brainard's beautiful logo—double pansies clothed in dress and coat —and the vulva of which Irigaray writes so wonderfully. Tender Buttons are “the two lips,” nipples, clits, skin, multiplicitous sites of pleasure, both physical and conceptual.


"A woman touches herself constantly without anyone being able to forbid her to do so, for her sex is composed of two lips which embrace continually. Hints, within herself she is already twobut not divisible into oneswho stimulate each other."


(the night time activity the erotics of writing after and before the other kind of button tending as in Tender tender tending her nether double buttons and again writing. So connections were surfacing with a new way of writing I saw as multiple and expressing my monde I mean my mind which was an other way women used writing, how women used writing to say all sides of a thing of a feeling all sides of the ways to approach like a flock of birds like an accordion form which rejects closure)

All the books I’ve published have in common the question, “Can poetry change the world?” Someday I’ll have time to write the secret history of Tender Buttons Press. I hope you all can help me write it.

-Founding Editrix, Lee Ann Brown