Thomas Wolfe is a native son and I have some odd family connections to him and to his family. His birthday was Friday and I Wolfe-bombed Facebook with many of my favorite quotes. My favorite book of his is Of Time and The River, possibly because I love the river so much.
His relationship to his hometown was complicated and difficult, but in the end he came back here to be buried in Riverside Cemetery. The house he loved here was ripped down years ago and the boardinghouse he despised is now the official Thomas Wolfe historic site, courtesy of the State of NC.
So I’ve pondered Wolfe and his mother this weekend. His mother was part of a locally prominent family and was a woman entrepreneur at a time that few women did that. She was despised by him and her husband, mocked in his most well-known novel Look Homeward Angel. We named a pocket garden after her earlier this year and I honor and respect her. The garden is the Julia Westall Wolfe Peace Garden. It’s downtown, across from the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium.
That’s all, really. Thinking about writing and fame and being very tall and disrespecting your mother. I did make apple jelly today, though. A little sweetness added to this reverie of October times.