Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Poem: "Welcome to Wolfenoot"

This poem is spillover from the November 6, 2018 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] alexseanchai and[personal profile] bairnsidhe. It also fills the "No Such Thing as 'Just' Friends" square in my 11-5-18 card for the Family Ties Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] fuzzyred. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series.


"Welcome to Wolfenoot"

[November 23, 2015]


Because nobody had
a big family dinner planned
for Thanksgiving, the graduates
of the Homemade Families course
decided to celebrate Wolfenoot together.

Mrs. Reid offered to host the gathering,
since she had the space available,
a lovely red house in the suburbs
surrounded by tall fir trees.

Arlee and Jeric only had
a small apartment, but they
each agreed to bring something.

Oakley had a studio in a building
that Family Services provided for
people who aged out of foster care.

Cleome and Fenna came down from
Canada where they were traveling.
They were homefree at the moment,
having bought bus passes themed
as 90 Days in North America.

"Welcome to Wolfenoot!"
Mrs. Reid declared.

At first they all gathered
in the backyard, its grass
edged with blueberry bushes
and apple trees under the firs.

In one part, raised beds
surrounded a water pump.

"It's beautiful," Cleome said.
"It reminds me of Canada."

"We went all the way
up to Alaska, and all over
the Rockies," Fenna added.

"That sounds exciting,"
Mrs. Reid said with a smile.

"I've just been here, but I did
get my own studio apartment, and
my therapy is going great," Oakley said.
"I've gotten over most of the self-bullying
now. I think I might be polyamorous
and also some kind of queer."

"That's great news," said Fenna.

"We have news too," Arlee said,
holding up her hand. A single crystal
sparkled on the golden ring. "Jeric
and I are officially engaged."

"We didn't want to waste money on
a big diamond and then another ring,
so we picked a mother's ring that can
expand when we have kids," Jeric said.

"Very prudent of you," said Mrs. Reid.
"I'm glad to see you thinking ahead."

They went into the dining room,
its graceful wooden table surrounded
by walls that were white at the base
and then painted dark gray above.

Mrs. Reid put out a pitcher of
sparkling apple cider punch.

"I brought acorn soup," Oakley said.
"You can top it with sour cream
or squash seeds in spicy oil."

The soup tasted nutty and creamy,
and everyone argued amiably over
whether the sour cream or the oil
made a better topping for it.

"I didn't even know you could
eat acorns," said Jeric.

"You have to soak them
to leach out the bitterness,
but yeah," Oakley said.

"We made some friends
on the Lummi Reservation,"
Arlee said as she unveiled
a venison roast. "One of
them got a deer for us."

"I made mixed greens,"
Jeric said. "These are
traditional in soul food."

"I fixed autumn fruit salad,"
said Cleome. "Try some."

Everyone heaped their plates,
exclaiming over the different flavors
and textures of the recipes.

Finally Fenna brought out
the cake, its dark top dusted
with powdered sugar to make
a full moon surrounded by phases.

"This is a family recipe," she said.
"I haven't had occasion to make it in
years. I'm happy to share it with you."

They cut the cake and devoured it
with great enthusiasm, going back
for seconds until it was all gone.

"Holidays are so much more fun
with just friends," Cleome said.

"There's no such thing as
just friends," Fenna replied.

"Did everyone make their donation
to Wolf Haven International?"
Mrs. Reid asked them.

"Yes," everyone chorused,
and flourished their receipts.

"Then let the hunt begin!" she said.

In the spirit of Wolfenoot, they all
scattered through the house, peeking
under furniture and poking in corners.

Mrs. Reid had set a limit of $15 per gift,
and everyone had brought a bundle of them
with one item for each other person.

Whoever found a bundle would get
to pick their gift first, and then hand out
the rest of them to the other guests.

Oakley was the first to track down
Jeric's snowflake peppermint bark.

Then Fenna found Arlee's bundle
of goat milk soap in different scents,
which sparked some spirited debate
over who got which one of them.

Mrs. Reid spotted Cleome's set
of cloud-shaped spoon rests.

Arlee found the plantable pencils
that Oakley had contributed.

Jeric discovered the handwarmers
from Mrs. Reid that they could tuck
into their pockets on the way home.

Cleome turned up the carton of
wooden yo-yos from Fenna, who
wanted to share a childhood experience
that too many of them had missed earlier.

They shared a rousing howl of triumph,
then sat down to play with their loot.

Everyone agreed that it was more fun
than Thanksgiving and Christmas combined.

* * *

Notes:

See Amancia Reed's house in autumn and winter. The back door is on the back patio. Loungers provide a place to rest. The back yard includes a water pump.

This is the foyer. See the dining room table set and empty. The living room and the family room each have a fireplace. The kitchen includes a sink, adjacent to the family room. The common bathroom has a shower. The mudroom has a second staircase going up to the bonus room.

Upstairs, Amancia has the master bedroom and its ensuite bathroom. Bedroom 2 has a queen bed and Bedroom 3 has a double bed. They share a Jack-and-Jill bathroom. The bonus room has a daybed and games.

A few minutes away, this shared-use path invites activity.

Oakley Gilsoul lives in this apartment building. It has a roof patio with gardens. The exterior courtyard has gardens too.

The entrance leads into the lobby. It has a reading room and a quiet room. The common kitchen is next to the lounge and the rec room. The gym has exercise equipment. Residents can make use of the laundromat and bike parking.

Stairs lead up to the hallway for each floor. Oakley's apartment includes a bed, a kitchen, and a bathroom.

Arlee and Jeric live in this apartment building. It has a walrus sculpture outside and a roof deck above. Indoors, the lounge area includes a viewscreen and a kitchenette. The reading area is by the stairs. The common kitchen includes a dining table. The workout room offers various equipment.

Arlee and Jeric's apartment has a living room, a kitchen, a bathroom, and a bedroom.

Terramagne-America has much better public transportation than local-America does, so long-term passes are plentiful, popular, and high in quality. Depending on how much identification you want to show at the ticket window, you can get a punch-pass (which anyone can use, but if you lose it you're out the investment), a personal pass (which requires photo ID, but only you can use it and it's replaceable if lost), or a mass-transit ID (which is an actual picture ID card issued by major bus/train companies, for folks who don't drive, and can be loaded with any pass you buy). Passes can be local, state, regional, or national in range. The more common timespans are for one, three, six, or twelve months. Then there are the oddball specials. 90 Days in North America covers Canada, the United States including Alaska, and Mexico.

A mother ring has birthstones for the mother and her children. This style can grow with the family.

Wolfenoot, a 7-year-old's made-up holiday, goes viral, launches movement to benefit dogs and wolves
7-year-old’s vivid imagination and kind heart have created a new holiday called Wolfenoot, and the thousands of people around the world who’ll celebrate it Nov. 23 will donate to dog- and wolf-related charities, including one in Indiana.
Wolfenoot — say “wolf-uh-noot” — was born after the New Zealand boy told his mom about the holiday: “The Spirit of the Wolf brings and hides small gifts around the house for everyone. People who have, have had or are kind to dogs get better gifts than anyone else. You eat roast meat (because wolves eat meat) and cake decorated like a full moon.”

Sparkling Apple Cider Punch (Mrs. Reid)

Acorn Soup (Oakley)

Venison Roast (Arlee)

Southern Style Mixed Greens (Jeric)

Autumn Fruit Salad (Cleome)

Full Moon Cake (Fenna)

Wolves in Washington consist of several packs. Wolf Haven is a charity that supports wolves.

Stocking stuffers make good gifts.
Snowflake Peppermint Bark (Jeric)
Wooden Yo-yo (Fenna)
Plantable Pencils (Oakley)
Cloud Spoon Rest (Cleome)
Nourishing Goat's Milk Soap (Arlee)
Handwarmers (Mrs. Reid)
Tags: cyberfunded creativity, family skills, fantasy, fishbowl, food, holiday, nature, poem, poetry, reading, weblit, wildlife, writing
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