grief story: anger is like an organ

She stepped out and pulled the door shut. He didn’t anticipate the momentary delay and the tug on her arm was met with irritation. It was bright and warm; the perfect day for a walk. He immediately stopped to urinate on the wall that enclosed their front garden, if you could call it that.

Great, she thought, if it isn’t bad enough having the back garden covered in piss.

He immediately began his pursuit of smells and anything that moved, or made a noise. She attempted to do the training methods but then remembered she hadn’t been bothered with bringing the treats and doing all that. Now she regretted it. You reap what you sow, supposedly. Yet she hadn’t sowed the darkness she had reaped in life. Had she?

One foot in front of the other. Life tugged her along, just like this. Unrelenting. Just when she wanted to stand, just for a fraction of time. No, she wanted to go back. To undo what she hated; the change she didn’t invite. To rebirth the person stolen from her.

She stood, stock still, on a motionless street corner. Her vision ascended like a drone to take in this moment, as if from the eyes of another.

There she was, facing the park but heading nowhere. A scent flew past his snout, on the breeze. He lurched again, desperate to follow it.


The constant simmer surged to full heat. She gave it purchase in her mind, this time. What would it do?

She kicked him. Over and over and over.

To what end? There was none. In her mind he didn’t change, didn’t damage. For she didn’t want that. She just wanted to kick. To let it have its way and feel the momentary relief – like a druggy with their next hit.

She looked upward, face blank but desperate. I don’t want this anymore. God, take it. This living, pumping, organ of anger that took up residence the day he went. It’s just there and would want to stay. No matter how much I talk, or tell it to go, or let it all out. I’m not angry at you, or you, or it, or them.

I’m just angry.

God, take it.

What else to do? Except kick.

She stood there still, waiting. The birds called to the wind. He panted, and watched.


She felt the ground under her and absorbed the peace of the moment. She visualised this… thing, melting away. She could feel it, dissipating down through her feet and into the pavement, like a heavy sludge slipping through the gaps of a drain.

He lurched again and she was annoyed but the depth wasn’t there. The fiery ball had fizzled, stripped of its potency.

They moved on.

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