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All these people telling me not to be angry

Exhorting me to forgive, in their own poison: "Forget all about wrongs and enable those old patterns,

Eschew setting healthy boundaries or forgiveness is not valid!

It's for your own sake: Don't you know unforgiveness makes you bitter?"

So what if I am? Maybe then no one else will

Take a bite out of me, no one else will

Gnash their teeth, commending my sweetness or savoring my spice

Bitterness evolved as a protection

And I've known so many bitter women

Who've had people tear into them once too often, people

Expecting a taffy response to their vitriol: sweet, soft, mild. But I am not your recipe.

Not made of sugar and spice and everything nice, not a little girl.

I'm made of chilies, paprika, raw cacao, cinnamon and chicory,

Limes and lemons and kumquats, and if I choose

Honeyed words to bind my intentions, or serve you tea

Or dish out mercy, that is mine. Your power is alone in choosing how you approach the table.

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