Vials of Wrath

Take A Sip

I type anger in the description of the file on my laptop and it moves to the top of the list in the folder. It’s telling me that it deserves first place — Anger is an emotion that rises easily to the surface.

Photo by Peter Forster on Unsplash

Anger seems to be the great ‘go to’ emotion for many people these days.

Anger at things that they believe are unfair or unjust, anger at the way the country is being managed and anger at the ‘other ‘— those that are different from us.

When I think of how anger feels inside of me, it brings tension to my jaw as my back teeth grind and I hold it close. My breath becomes shallow as I revel in the recollections of wrongs done by others. I feel righteous. I feel right.

Anger is the long slow burn of a fuse that travels a great distance before going underground and simmering for years.

It ignites the peat on the moors, setting fire to the very earth underfoot until the land is heated from below. It’s like living on the sliding crust of a mountain that is leaking liquid lava, all molten and so red and orange that it hurts to look at it for very long.

Photo by Henry Be on Unsplash

Like the often repeated story that Inuit have many different words for snow, there are even more different English words for anger. A quick search brings up a writers website that lists 75 synonyms for angry — each with a short definition.

They range from the level of ‘Cheesed off’, which is defined as bored or frustrated, to the violent level of ‘Apoplectic’.

Resentment is a sort of simmering where you hold the bitter taste in your mouth instead of spitting it out. You hold it there instead of swallowing it down and you savor it with a twisted satisfaction until its malignancy infects your soul. Resentment rises like bile, rising from the depths of your gut.

A huffier type of anger is the indignation of indigestion that is aroused when in your righteousness you assign disgust to an action or deed. Indignation rises with displeasure and allows one to turn away or remove yourself from its presence.

Strangle feels like an angry word. It takes my vocal chords and tightens them up in a noose. If you are considering using this method in a murder mystery, consider that you are likely to fail to have the tenacity. It takes a manic strength to hold the cords around someones neck long enough to snuff out their life. Also, this method is very likely to leave your DNA on the victim, which may or may not be helpful to your plot.

There are many levels of anger and some of them are violent.

Wrath has a higher quality of anger, a pure emotion. It’s anger that’s often associated with a god or a deity. An example is the wrath of God. The Merriam-Webster dictionary describes it as ‘divine chastisement.

A violent excitement is the passion of rage where agitation is increased to the point of intense overload. Usually violence ensues when rage raises its ugly head.

Belligerence aroused by a wrong that has been committed. It’s a strong emotion that is often described as ire. There is an aggressive attitude toward the person who acted wrongly.

A solution to deeply held anger is Forgiveness.

Finding a way to examine your anger and shift your perspective is a way to help yourself forgive. This act will free you from the toxic burden you are carrying.

Photo by Lina Trochez on Unsplash



White hot bundles.
Anger tightly wrapped
with many lengths of twisted twine.

I held this burden close
unwrapped it often
and examined every reason.
I remembered well.

I held each piece of blackened stone
and sharpened glass.
Turned them over, one by one,
and deftly honed their edges.

I invoked a recollection,
the close intense examination
that reveals the pain.

I recalled the wrongs
and sliced open half healed wounds.
I swam deeply in the seething pool
and swallowed daily doses
of reminders and remembering
choking on the bitterness.

My inoculation,
a ward against hope,
on guard against love.
It shut me down.

I dreamed a revelation, of wasted years obsessing,
crippled by the sour bile of my choosing.
A change from righteous fever
of angry justification.

It brought imagination,
a new consideration,
another way to be.

I walked my weary bundles down a different path
I held the wounded parts of me with gentle hands,
gasping at the tender touch I had withheld.

I sipped a soothing liquid
that quenched the blackened vessel of my heart.

Summoning the light, I breathed intention.
I held it in my mouth, as a treasure,
a small smooth stone that was a word.

poem by T. Langdon

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