Pomegranate Hope | Teen Ink

Pomegranate Hope

September 27, 2021
By PhoebeY PLATINUM, Hangzhou, Other
PhoebeY PLATINUM, Hangzhou, Other
21 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Time was our nemesis: it did not tolerate our being, and separated our hearts before they felt the presence of another.

I do not remember our first acquaintance: I did not have a heart back then. Maybe it was on the staircase, me crying out a woeful tune with my flute and you joyfully chatting with your friends. You were the amiable one back then, and I was the outcast, rescued by your affability. Or maybe it happened in the garden, with the pomegranates ripening into a blood-like red on the green canvas. I was having a splendid conversation with some other people, and you passed by alone—so I was the one with a circle back then, and I broke it for the presence of you.

Either way, we met. And the story started from there. I must apologize for not remembering our every encounter. You see, pomegranates do not ripen overnight. A sprout of hope does not grow on a desolate land, and even if it does, which is a miracle, people tend to turn their glances away at first and refuse to see. When people finally stare at the miracle in sheer awe, the sprout had already grown into a tree of hope. No one besides the pomegranate tree itself knows the stories before the ripening of the fruit, and it is a pity that someone like me, someone who would live off of that tree for the rest of her entire life, does not remember that period of dread, without which there would be no hope.

You were the first one who asked why I had no hope.

“Was Plato’s fire hope?”

“It is exclusive hope—for one and only one person in that cave. And that person, who stared into the fire, is the only one who could reignite it.”

“But then I would bring a disaster of ignorance to this world.”

“No. You would be the goddess, and…you get to watch a puppet show.”

We laughed, a hearty laugh. At that moment, as I so vividly remember, I was staring into the sun.

When you love someone your world revolves around that person, but the cruelty of time breaks you apart. Had I known that my life was destined before I could make that decision, I would not have permitted myself to even notice the presence of you in my life. Face it, I told myself, I was the product of my generation. As much as I wanted to fight against my destined end, my actions were still restricted by this world which boxed my presence.

I am sorry, but I cannot give up my entire world just for you. It was a reluctant choice, I swear—I wanted to win, to win at all costs, and that means to win with you. But I was afraid, afraid that if one thing—just one little thing—went wrong, I would end up losing. And I could not bear that risk.

I was a coward, a blind follower of my generation, and you should never, ever forgive me for my selfishness. I do not expect you to forgive me.

You said that I gave you hope—no. You gave me all the hope in the world. You held my hands in yours and allowed me to touch those pomegranates, those blood-red ripe fruits, as red as a fire. You led me away from shackles and towards the sun, towards hope to escape what I called “my generation”, and you did reignite the flames. Yes, you gave me all the hope in the world, but I refused your generosity. I shut my eyes and ran away, away from the sun, away from a sprouting pomegranate tree, and back into the audience of a puppet show. Your efforts were in vain, and I am the sole cause for the misfortune. I made this choice, and I do not regret—I feel only guilt.

Do not forgive me, and I do pray day and night, for your tolerance would only cast more shackles on me, and make the puppet show more horrifically painful.

You gave me my heart, without which the flames died down once more. I neglected it this time since now they were of the least importance to me. This time I passed under the pomegranate tree and walked away, away from the flame, and away from hope.

Like what I should have done in the first place.

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