I think there are many emotions we have as normal feeling humans that are quite beneficial. I mean, really, if they didn’t serve a purpose, why would we even experience them. Love, hate, anger, jealousy, pity, empathy, angst — and rage. Rage seems to be the bad guy in the feelings department. If you rage, you are out of control and that’s bad. If you don’t rage, you lack passion and that’s bad. Even the word itself evokes certain powerful emotions that may be too difficult for some to face head on.
I’ve been thinking about rage a lot lately. And, honestly, like many of you, I can’t really even say the word without thinking about Dylan Thomas and his words:
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Thomas made rage really cool didn’t he?
But, clearly, he is speaking about raging against death. Some people rage against death I suppose, maybe I have too. But, really rage can creep up during other times more often than at death. And I would bet that the majority of people don’t think rage (other than at death) is very cool.
I’ve been reading Sylvia Plath lately. I would not recommend reading her for long periods of time — she was angry, she was mad, her words reflect a woman who was beyond broken — she raged. The other side of rage. The side that makes us uncomfortable. The side we don’t want to see much less experience. I tried to find an excerpt from one of her pieces to share, but — I hesitate. You can read them for yourself.
So rage. Sometimes is cool. Sometimes it’s scary. But, I think that we all experience this at some point. Maybe we keep it hidden because having someone witness your rage might be the proverbial deal breaker in any relationship. It can be ugly. It can be very non-Dylan Thomasy.
The butterflies and unicorns stay near the surface, the things we want people to remember. The good. The funny. The sparkle.
The rage has to take it’s place below — hidden away. Only to be let out if all the conditions are correct, But, sometimes, I think it’s ok to let it out. I think it’s ok to let it breathe and have a life. I think it’s ok to rage.