A Pantoum on Anger

After I wrote *the worst* pantoum, I wrote this abstract little ditty to try to explain myself:

I’ve fallen to

Snap, shout, hiss
but the old

Once a

What used
to ignite
fiery torrents
now brings
days of

(oh dear)
Ok, ok, onto the truly terrible pantoum (and I do think anger cliché-ridden, that there is a repetitiveness of the trite in states of rage):

Anger is a potent force. Anger is red, explosive, repetitive. An angry person has lost their rationality. Anger is a sword of destruction, a way to hurt. Anger is red, explosive, repetitive. When the victim becomes the oppressor. Anger is a sword of destruction, a way to hurt. To hurt the way you’ve been hurt. When the victim becomes the oppressor. Anger is a bullet. To hurt the way you’ve been hurt. Anger is a fire bomb. Anger is a bullet. Anger collects furies to hurl. Anger is a fire bomb. Anger destroys what took time to build. Anger collects furies to hurl. When it erupts, it tears the gaussian blur off things. Anger destroys what took time to build. Anger is a great leveller. When it erupts, it tears the gaussian blur off things. Anger sees the mark darkly. Anger is a great leveller. The raging storm. Anger sees the mark darkly. The roaring wind. The raging storm. Tears the world apart with battering. The roaring wind. The broken homes. Tears the world apart with battering. Anger transforms. The broken homes. Loss of illusions. Anger transforms. Anger is a potent force of renewal.

A response to Big Tent Poetry’s June 11th prompt: write an angry pantoum (and where you can read the other entries in the linked comments)


About Brenda Clews

poet, painter, videopoet, editor blogs at Rubies in Crystal: http://brendaclews.blogspot.com art website: http://brendaclews.com videopoems: http://goo.gl/zdpZ5
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16 Responses to A Pantoum on Anger

  1. brenda w says:

    I like this, Brenda. I’m the other brenda, who will now be brenda w. Pleased to meet you!
    Your pantoum rocks. What are you worried about? Starting so many sentences with Anger worked well for this piece. It smacks of anger. It hisses, shouts, and snaps!
    Well done.

    • Brenda Clews says:

      Hi Brenda… w. 🙂 Thank you… I was thinking of bombers and the like, politically-motivated anger, and the horrendous domestic brawls you read of in the paper where houses are burned down, and worse, and of an argument two women who lived in the room next to mine way back, 1979, when I was a graduate student, and its repetitiveness, repetition, trite cliches again and again, and the broken window that got them evicted, and some of my own situations, though they haven’t reached nearly far enough into the core of anger among many in our society (hence drawing on the news, other witnessing).

      Yet I wished to write something more personal… so was disappointed that nothing came up but the anger chant, the incant.


  2. derrick2 says:

    Anger certainly comes through and I especially like the line: “Anger collects furies to hurl.”! Your little ditty is good too but a pity to leave yourself disconsolate, enveloped by clouds.

    • Brenda Clews says:

      Ahh, Derrick, nowadays I may flare for a moment but it’s an old habit, underneath there’s no real anger. Instead I retire to my private place to cry. Sometimes for hours without stopping, sometimes on and off for days. The things that once made me angry now provoke deep and inconsolable sadness.

      But I didn’t know how to write that except to talk about rain, an image of inconsolable clouds…

  3. Mary says:

    Oh, my, two Brendas. I am glad one will be Brenda W. from now on. LOL

    Brenda, you have expressed many truths/philosophies in your pantoum. I found your other poem interesting too. To me it said that earlier you would explode in anger, but now the feelings linger at a lesser level but drag on for a longer time. I wonder sometimes which is better, don’t you?


    • Brenda Clews says:

      I have no idea, Mary, but my Dad in his 50s used to say, when us kids of his were in full sturm and drang, ‘passion is for the young… I’m too old now,’ or something like that. And with an angry young son, actually he’s not too bad now at 23, but it’s not so the previous years, I realized I was kind of where my Dad was at. All that fury! Whether the copious tears that now fall (usually in private, that can be very upsetting to those you live with) are any better, I don’t know.

  4. b_y says:

    Since you mentioned cliches, yes, but they work. Anger is not usually all that original. You did work in some beauts, though. the furies Derrick mentioned. “tear” combined with gaussian blurr, I really liked, and the mark darkly (did you intend the echo of Corinthians?)

    • Brenda Clews says:

      One of the characteristics of anger, b_y, is surely it’s lack of originality. Listen to the substance abuser on the street, he repeats himself over & over, and he’s speaking cliches. The rage knows no other language. How to express these inexpressible inner furies? It comes out in tired and worn phrases that the enraged is calling upon to receive understanding for their viewpoint. Our cliches are our commonalities. Listening to others arguing is listening to repetitive, monotonous, irrational cliches being hurled with great and frightening fury.

      Thanks for the reminder of Corinthians…

  5. Tumblewords says:

    I recognize this feeling – sometimes anger dissipates to leave a swell of disappointment with waves of melancholy. Excellent!

  6. pamela says:

    Very well expressed Brenda!

  7. I particularly related to the first poem (oh dear!). The second was good too. I enjoyed them both! Nice to meet you!


  8. Deb says:

    I love the originality, the way you get at the heart of anger and what it can do. The second poem reads part incantation, part confession, part prayer. It works for me!

    And your “ditty” is not little, but expansive. Shows how beautifully ash rests on cooling ember. How sprouts break the crust of an old fire storm.

    The pair together is something special.

  9. Your writing makes me want to write a shorter poem, now, borrowing some of my favorite “pantoumiam” images.

    Love the drum-beat in the pantoum. The way you formatted it made me barely notice its form, which made it extra intriguing.


  10. pieceofpie says:

    i am glad for the ditty… it opens a door where all kinds of thoughts are breathing… and the pantoum in paragraph form lends a whole different feeling though still a great expression. the destruction of anger is beautiful in that we can see and understand and to know after all that there is renewal… stirred up

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