“Come and see!” I call to my daughters
“I have a surprise to show you!”
They toddle over to me and together we crouch
On the kitchen floor
Huddled around the dusty red orb I hold
Cupped in my hands:
“Mommy wants to show you something,” I murmur, as I
Carefully pierce it’s flesh with a knife
Then dig my thumbs into the rind and
Someday I will tell them
It was a pomegranate in the garden of eden,
Not an apple.
I will teach them how are ancestors believed
There are the same number of seeds
As there are commands in the Torah,
How the Promised land was flowing
But also pomegranates.
Someday I will tell them how it once represented Christ,
How the red, red juices flow from its wounded side.
Someday I will teach them that they, too,
Will flow with blood once they are
That deep inside they contain seeds that may,
How their bellies may ripen with the new life they carry
Maybe then they will understand
Why their mama
Has this inked on her back;
Maybe then they will know
What this symbol has come to mean for me:
Body and blood
Beauty and promise.
But I will not say any of this today.
It is enough
To see their eyes widen
In awe and joy and surprise
As they see the ruby-like seeds inside
In hushed voices,