The Pomegranate Allure

A pomegranate has inspired me to write in my blog again. It is a special fruit….native to the Middle East and the Mediterranean and also thrives in the drier climates of California and Arizona.

There is a Greek myth about the beautiful Persephone, Goddess of Spring, who was picking wildflowers when she was spotted by Pluto, god of the underworld, who fell in love with one look. Pluto seized the maiden and carried her off as his bride to Hades, his underworld home. Persephone resisted to no avail. Her mother, Demeter, goddess of agriculture, searched high and low for her daughter as the earth sank into cold and dark winter year round. Persephone tasted the food of Hades, a handful of pomegranate seeds, which bound her to her husband for a third of the year. She had grown to love him but missed her mother dearly and begged him to let her return for a visit. When she returned to earth and reunited with her mother, all the plants began flowering once again. The period when she rejoins Pluto corresponds to the winter season.

Occasionally, I teach art classes for underprivileged children as part of the ACE program founded by an artist friend here. The last time I spent with the kids I’d happened to bring a pomegranate with me. I shared it with them and they were awestruck. They had never heard of them, nor seen them, never mind tasted them. They loved the taste and asked if I had more….talk about enthusiasm! Then they memorized the name and went home begging their moms to buy them these exotic fruits. Pomegranates have power.

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