The shortest day, the longest night. A turning point. A Christmas memory.
In the old earth religions, the Winter Solstice represents a time for turning within, drawing on one's inner resources, a period of reflection. So here I am, meditating on the concept of the multiverse. The longest night affords us a good, long look at the stars. A chance to put our place in this world into perspective. I take this time to search the universe within me, as well. So many levels to contemplate - hence, the many layers in the agate representing my poor head.
At the same time, I am reminded of many a Christmas past. Snow on the hills, the lowering gray sky. An evergreen or two poking up out of the blinding whiteness. The little red seeds represent something else entirely.
I may have been all of ten years old at the time. I grew up in the Central San Joaquin Valley in California where snow never fell. Our next door neighbors had a huge pomegranate tree in their back yard. Being relatively unsupervised, I'd stolen many a fruit with impunity. We were out of school for Christmas vacation. I climbed over the five-foot tall wooden fence and up into the neighbors' tree as I had a dozen times before. I picked two nice, fat pomegranates and tied them into my shirt, leaving my hands free for the climb back down. Just as I was swinging back over the fence, my mom came out into the back yard to bring in the laundry. She saw me and shouted. I missed my footing and when I hit the ground the fruit went flying, bursting on the back wall of the house, splattering against the flapping white sheets. Little dots of purplish red all over those snowy sheets. My mother, who grew up in North Dakota, took one look at the mess and laughed. "Roses in the snow!" she said. I never found out exactly what she meant by that, but it left an image in my mind. Of course, I had to help with the laundry for the next month and I know I must have been punished for stealing, but all I clearly remember is her laugh.