Posts Tagged ‘anger’




how to erode

this growing wall of anger—

one breath at a time

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I’m not saying we shouldn’t be angry.

Anger seems reasonable. But perhaps

we will do what I’ve heard the Inuit do—

spend the emotion on walking, walk a line

until all the anger has left our bodies.

The moment the Inuit notice the anger is gone,

replaced, perhaps, by sadness or fear,

compassion or just a quietness,

they mark that spot with an object

to show the extent of their anger.

And perhaps, if we’re lucky, when we walk

this way, it will be a long enough walk

that we arrive at each other’s doors,

object in hand, and when the object

leaves our grip, we’ll be able to use our hands

to greet each other, touch each other’s faces,

point to the horizon to all the other places

we might choose to walk now together.

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One Thing to Do With a Fist




wrap it around

a bouquet of gold and orange calendula,

now offer it to someone else—

how easily their smile

opens your hand


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Despite Birdsong




In a cupboard

he opens often

he keeps a box

of resentment.

Something about

knowing it is there

makes him feel alive.


He touches the box

again and again,

lets the anger fill

whatever inside him

feels empty.


Hear it? Thumping

in him, pretending

it is a heart. It’s easy

to mistake.

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One Message from the Body



an old black coat I slip on

that no longer fits—

this anger

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That Dry Feeling




In his heads, he swirls

the dark loose leaves

of his thoughts,

lets them boil

and steep too long,

then offers the tea

to others to drink,

but it spills before

the tea reaches the cup,

and he fumes,

throws in more leaves.



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How It Transforms




a pinch of cumin,

a pinch of salt, the scent

of lemon and ginger—

tell me, what else I should have done

with my anger


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Baring my claws for the pleasure of retracting them, choosing again to be gentle.



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Looking for reasons to justify

my anger with you, I found instead

a silver handle without

a pitcher, the scent of peonies,

a bush of ripened berries and a hum.

Is it any wonder my hands forgot

how to fight? That missing

pitcher filled with spring water,

that is what my silence wants

to say to your silence. And

that ripeness, that is what

my hands long to bring to yours.

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title on a line by Yasmin Ramirez

I wanted to believe I could turn myself into a lilac tree
so your blow would move through without harming me,
all of my petals still intact.

I wanted to believe I could turn myself into a river,
could pull you in and away from the angry shore.

I wanted to believe I could stop you with my eyes,
could turn your fist into a song or a wing or a clear night.

There are days we learn how human we are. How sometimes
flesh is only flesh and a fist is a fist and a hatred
is a bridge that will never carry weight again
and a life is made of both blood and bruise,

the hour of the lung, the hour of the gut, the hour
of the bone and the lip.

I wanted to believe I could be more than a woman,
not just the sum of breakable parts, that I could be
the drive toward blossom, the radical acceptance
and thrust of the current.

I wanted to believe in tenderness. And transformation.
And something larger than the self that wears the wounds.

There are days we learn what we will do when someone hits us.
It doesn’t matter what we thought we knew we would do.

I turned into a lilac tree.

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