Where I’m from we swallow the seeds
so that a pomegranate has the chance to become
a pomegranate tree,
and all the way down
you feel new life stretching your oesophagus
like a zygote embedded in a uterine wall.
By then you'd count every leaf as the seed
gave way to cotyledon, cotyledon to plumule
and plumule to stalk,
that stretches forth into
a trunk bursting from the torso with pomegranates,
and new seeds waiting to be swallowed again.
my sister is picking fruit, tummy aching
with the weight of a second basket;
my mind three steps to the left
of my skull,
i ask for pomegranates
(the sun is dead that watched me
last time i ate.)
my sister says:
"there are no strawberries"
my sister says:
"there are too many raspberries"
i need something
the size of
my fist, bursting
with red cells and life
to swell my chest, ground me
like a phonebox, my heart
can barely hold one person
before we start to bruise each other,
peach soft, blushing
dark and aching,
as each mistake rots through
to the pit of my stomach
juice runs down her
fingers like old blood
plasma gilded, scabbed
and spilled, please
give me thicker skin,
cake me in rind and membrane
to hold the magma in.
What is love?
Sweet nectar on poisoned lips;
Or ripened fruit on curious tongues.
Is love sealed with a righteous kiss;
Or is love selfish and stealing,
Hidden away for all to miss.
Does love see no bounds or limitations?
In awe of you; of your beauty.
Is love a relentless invasion?
On a four horsed chariot poisoned with cruelty.
Will love die for you; with you,
Take your last embrace.
Or will love trick you; take you,
To end the long, lonely chase.
When all is said and all is done;
pomegranate and poison are both written in fame;
Sweet and bitter,
But love all the same.
She dreamed of pomegranates among lilies,
red orbs glowing among the white,
water beneath, black as soot and death,
while life drifted just above the surface.
She thought of Catherine of Aragon,
forlorn loves, starved dreams,
desolate, but beautiful, on the surface of death.
The most lovely thing about life,
is that it ends.
I planted all the seeds of all your pomegranates,
I watered them with my tears,
My love was the sunshine on them.
They grew above me, they reached the clouds,
They grew higher, then reached the stars,
They grew for you, they grew fruit for you.
Now come, harvest our trees.
Life is my current lover.
I swig her ephemeral taste from my cupped hands
worried as the golden, shimmering liquid rushes through
creases and cracks in my jaded hands.
Her mood varies through my stages;
at times she is of doting temper and roseate kisses
but when love evades her, most often than not,
her calloused hands damage the pearly flesh in tender
and discontent paints a surly mood as she digs her crimson
brush against the canvas of my self.
Life is my inconsistent lover,
sometimes doting but most often than not abusive.
So I vowed my eternal devotion to Death.
We escape under the dark canopy of starless wings;
I eat of the forbidden feasts in the Kingdom of Hades,
grains of scarlet pomegranates staining my chapped lips.
Death has promised me perpetuity.
But until Life decides to release me from her capricious temper,
I shall long for the wintry, rainy comfort of my drowsy affair.
The grocery store doesn't sell pomegranates anymore.
I go looking through the strawberries and the blueberries,
touch the blackberries to see if they really do stain but find
nothing. No pomegranates, not even the seeds. I wonder
if they know about the breakfast you set out two days ago
that no one touched and the time you bit into a rotten pear
just to put your mouth where someone else's had been.
I wonder if they know that you still call your new wife by all
of my mom's old nicknames, and I wonder if you know that
you and I are really both just star particles, scattered across
time and space, and reconfigured into some semblance of
order. Humans like order, daddy, I'm sure you know that. Fruit,
vegetables, meat, herbivore, omnivore, carnivore, they no
longer sell pomegranates at the grocery store. When
archeologists have recovered all of the bones from a site,
they leave it. Even the dead must eventually go silent.
Remember during the summer, when we'd sit on the deck
and crack open pomegranates like fractured skulls, just to see
if they really did bleed. You'd only stain your two front teeth,
but I always had the magenta juice rouged across my mouth
and smudged into my cheeks. What I'm trying to say, is that
the grocery store no longer sells pomegranates, but I've still
got the burgundy stains under my fingernails, and even the
small part of my heart that still wields a pick ax is getting
tired of all of the repetitive motion. Daddy, herbivore, omnivore,
carnivore, they no longer sell pomegranates at the grocery store.
If I were a color I would be red.
Not a pointless, dull, fierce red.
But a loving, passionate, triumphant red.
I would show my color through sweet strawberries,
juicy pomegranates and fresh cherries.
I would de the color of love that could demolish hearts
and kill the soul.
Or revive the spirit and have a romantic time.
I would be an indispensable color.
Without it, life would be boring.
I am red, and proud of it.