Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Poem: "The Addams Family Reunion"

This is the freebie for today's fishbowl, based on a backchannel prompt from [personal profile] technoshaman.  It also fills the "crafty" square in my 12-1-15 card for the Defining Character Bingo fest, and the "soulmates" square in my 10-2-15 card for the [community profile] ladiesbingo fest.


"The Addams Family Reunion"


Wednesday Addams is crafty
in both senses of the word,
sly and creative.

She sews herself a dress
of black silk slit past her navel
and slinks on stiletto heels
made from recycled knives.

When the other young women
at college whisper behind their hands
or to her face, wondering why she
never wears anything but black,
Wednesday just smiles and says,
"I'm a dark femme. Not all
high femmes wear pink."

In the autumn, she walks through fog
between rows of streetlights like full moons
and imagines that she hears the song
of werewolves running in the woods
behind the campus.

But then one night,
it's not imagination anymore,
and that's how she meets December.

Where Wednesday is feminine,
December is masculine, small breasts
buttoned behind the white shirt and
pinstriped suitcoat of a soft butch.

Once a month, December turns into
a brindled wolf, and Wednesday
runs beside her dressed as Diana.

On cold, snowy evenings
they drink black cappuccino
and share dark chocolate tortes
in the campus coffeehouse,
go out for dinner and an opera,
and frighten the little siblings
of their classmates who visit.

They talk about Wednesday's career
as a decorator of funeral parlors --
already in demand -- and December's
as a lawyer, interning at her uncle's firm.

They talk about how many children they want --
at least two, a boy and a girl -- and where
they might find a witch because clearly
they're going to need some help
to get Wednesday pregnant.

They meet each other's families,
which is nerve-wracking but also
secretly exciting to meet so many
new and interesting people.

Wednesday isn't surprised when
the tiny red heart blossoms at
the base of her left ring finger.

She remembers getting "the Talk"
from her mother at twelve, about how
everyone's heart has its own wavelength,
like a radio channel, and the soulmark
appears to tell you when you're falling
for someone who is on your wavelength
and will make a good husband.

She remembers thinking, silently,
But Mother, I don't want a husband.

When December proposes, on one knee
with a ring of black diamond in a velvet case,
Wednesday laughs and says yes and then
has to explain why it's funny that she's
winding up with a husband after all,
just one who isn't exactly a man.

They get married on a beautiful spring day
with clouds like merino wool and rain
like curtains of silk, silver and gold
where the sun peeks out to play
through the falling water.

Wednesday is wearing a dress
bedecked in jet beads that she
and her mother made together.

December is wearing a bespoke suit
and her lucky Lady Florsheims.

Thing brings the rings, slipped onto
each other's fingers to hide the marks
that are each only for the other now.

December is maybe trembling a little
when she lifts the black lace veil
to kiss her blushing bride.

Morticia is definitely crying as she
hands over the matriarch's key
to her newlywed daughter.

After the wedding proper,
there is a family reunion with
both sides, lots of people huddling
under umbrellas with new friends.

December whispers, "I'm pretty sure
those boys who almost killed each other
fighting over the bouquet are kissing
behind the garden shed."

Wednesday doesn't giggle,
but she gives a dark little chuckle.

December is a perfect gentleman as
she cuts the enormous black forest cake
and delicately feeds Wednesday a bite
from a silver fork, then returns to serve
everyone else while Wednesday attends
to service from the champagne fountain.

"See, I said you'd grow up to marry a man
just like your father," says Old Uncle Fester
as he holds out his champagne flute.

"December isn't a man," Wednesday points out.
She has had that conversation twenty times today.

"But just like your father," says Old Uncle Fester,
nodding at December and Gomez in matching tuxedoes.

"Hard to argue with that one," Wednesday admits
as she hands him the flute full of bubbles,
which emits a long trail of smoke.

* * *

Notes:

The Addams Family is a famous show about delightfully weird people. This is the next generation.

See December Addams and her Lady Florsheims.

Butch and femme are gender polarities in the lesbian community. Stereotypically, femmes wear a lot of pink. We all know what Wednesday Addams does with stereotypes: she uses them to light the parlor candles.

Women Who Run with the Wolves is a classic feminist book. Diana is the Roman goddess of wild animals and the hunt, often considered a lesbian.

The left ring finger was believed to have a direct connection to the heart.

Soulmates may be identified by marks. Here I have twisted the trope so that a soulmark does not tell you who to get involved with, but rather when you have found an optimum match. You still have to do all the work of building a good relationship yourself. But Wednesday has the most romantic role models in the history of ever, so she knows how to do that.
Tags: cyberfunded creativity, fantasy, fishbowl, gender studies, poem, poetry, reading, romance, weblit, writing
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