It’s been a few days since I’ve been to the store, partially because I’ve been working, but mostly because I might have misplaced the next edition of my credit card. Turns out plastic works less well when expired. But, new card located in stacks of other, less important paperwork that really ought to be recycled and trip to buy more cat litter accomplished.
At the store, I found that the ever busy merchandizers have replaced the halloween cookies that greeted me the last time I walked into the produce section, with a cardboard dishwasher box of pomegranates. Huge, mutant soft ball sized pomegranates. The box even provided a handy website and set of manuals for opening your pomegranate. Yes, we have no problem opening and consuming all the multiple layers of packaging on the halloween candy but the fruit has a freaking manual.
I noticed that recently on the squashes, too. Someone has been putting little stickers on the outside of all the gnarly gray and green gourds that say “great in the microwave!”. As if someone who was intimidated by a vegetable that resembles a zucchini with a lethal case of warts will suddenly say, “oh, I can just microwave it! Because not knowing how to cook it was the only think keeping me for wanting it for dinner.”. And I like squash, but that thing? Yeah, I don’t think so.
But pomegranates, they are magical. Despite what the little manual says, there is no way to open them cleanly or easily. That’s part of the greatness of pomegranates. You get your fingers in them, you stain everything within a six foot radius of you with magenta blood each time one of those stinking little arils explodes, you have to crack each one out like pop it beads so that you eat them only a few at a time and they break open in your mouth with an enthusiasm pop rocks only dream of. They are the anti-gnarly squash. They are gorgeous, inside and out.
And the best part is that they take so long to eat that just one can keep me entertained for hours. But then, it’s been said that I’m easily entertained.
I’ve been trying to press pomegranates into a poem since the last time pomegranate season rolled around but I seem to be stuck somewhere between not doing justice and butchering cliche. Or maybe it just needs more time and few more fruits. Or, maybe I should leave pomegranates to all the poets who have written about them for millennia and give some love the that poor gnarly squash, because really, I’m sure it is good in the microwave.