Monday, October 19, 2015

Smashing Pumpkins

Pumpkins, on the outside, are a perfectly pleasing lot.

Geometrically satisfying with their spherical shapes and curious curves, their smooth, vibrant skin is outdone only by their gnarled, knobby stems. 

And while each individual pumpkin certainly has its own personality - thus the fun of choosing one - the truth is that every single one of these beauties is more or less as perfect as the next.

But - as anyone who has ever opened up one of these gorgeous gourds can attest - the inside of a pumpkin is a whole 'nother matter.

Pale white flesh lacks the strength and vitality of the outer skin; its fibrous mass quickly breaks down into shapeless shreds. 

And the gushy orange guts, cold and stringy, cling defiantly to those fragile fibers to form slippery handfuls of yucky mush.

In comparison to their smooth and sumptuous outer selves, pumpkin innards are messy, complicated and difficult to deal with. 

In this way, I suppose that pumpkins are a whole lot like people.

On the outside, we present ourselves as smooth, centered, colorful, and balanced.

But inside, we are oftentimes a mess. Life's circumstances fill each one of our lives with challenges, traumas, hurts and fears, and while we all learn to manage them, one way or another, most of us try to keep the messy and complicated parts of ourselves hidden deep within, where no one else can see.

Hmm. I'm not particularly flattered to be likened to an overgrown gourd in this way but I can't deny that there's some truth in the comparison.

However, there's one more thing on the inside of every pumpkin - seeds.

Seeds represent growth, hope and the blessed assurance that new life is just around the corner.

And in this way, I am perfectly pleased to be a pumpkin.

* * * * *

A song called Hope from Smashing Pumpkins.

And now my metaphor is complete. 

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