I think this poem is about Jones suffocating in his own femininity and pressures to conform. Unable to speak, his words are words falling out like flowers– flowers die, flowers wilt. His words fall flat, they lose their meaning, he loses his ability to articulate himself. Flowers are associated with femininity– are his words are too feminine, too soft? Dresses are associated with femininity as well, and are a recurring theme in his poetry. They’re closing in, almost taunting. The closet is locked, he is trapped. It is filling up with petals, suffocating his in dresses, corsets, silks– his own femininity and pressure to conform is what is suffocating him. He fears a part of himself and feels compelled to apologize, vowing never to ask for mother again, h Are the dresses an empty version of a mother figure he lacks or longs for? He is reaching out, hands=touching, feeling for something that is not there. Mothers “emptied out,” is he reaching for something that does not exist? He is searching for some answer within dresses that are like corpses, they are empty, they are nothing, but they hold power. Is “mother” suffocating him? Is this punishment? He trys to say no but he is silenced by flowers. Flowers usually mean growth, life, spring, new beginnings. Here they suffocate him. Is there no life left? Something so filled with life, filled with new growth betray him, trap him. Metaphors that would typically be beautiful in poetry are menacing, dangerous, encrouching on him like a disease.