Seething Hatred

Three months ago, I wrote about how hard it is to accept being powerless. Now, I am a malignant mass of seething hatred for my ex-husband. If only I could kill him. It would be an act of mariticide, although I don’t know if this applies to exes.

I hate that miserable fucker. I called and tried hard to be nice, to project friendliness. I asked when I could come over to see Max’s things, hoping I could borrow some of his books. We always loved the same books and asked each other for recommendations.

But no! Still no. That bastard is like a character from a Dickens novel, a mean old man who lives to say the word No. His exact words were: “If and when I’m ready, I’ll let you know.” When I began to argue my case, he announced triumphantly: “I won’t be bullied by you.” (Repeat this in your head with an English accent, to get the full effect.) Nothing would change his mind. I lost my temper and he intoned  darkly:   “Don’t call me again.”

Last night I cried hysterically until I couldn’t breath, not because of the books but because of the situation of marrying a man who won’t let you see your son’s belongings, who has to try to control things even after death.

A reader named Marygrace sent me a link to a poem by Julie Sheehan that expresses the scope of my hatred with stunning accuracy. It is a singular gem that everyone should read and pass on, until the whole world can find solace in its perfection.

Hate Poem

I hate you truly. Truly I do.
Everything about me hates everything about you.
The flick of my wrist hates you.
The way I hold my pencil hates you.
The sound made by my tiniest bones were they trapped
in the jaws of a moray eel hates you.
Each corpuscle singing in its capillary hates you.

Look out! Fore! I hate you.

The blue-green jewel of sock lint I’m digging
from under my third toenail, left foot, hates you.
The history of this keychain hates you.
My sigh in the background as you explain relational databases
hates you.
The goldfish of my genius hates you.
My aorta hates you. Also my ancestors.

A closed window is both a closed window and an obvious
symbol of how I hate you.

My voice curt as a hairshirt: hate.
My hesitation when you invite me for a drive: hate.
My pleasant “good morning”: hate.

You know how when I’m sleepy I nuzzle my head
under your arm? Hate.
The whites of my target-eyes articulate hate. My wit
practices it.
My breasts relaxing in their holster from morning
to night hate you.
Layers of hate, a parfait.
Hours after our latest row, brandishing the sharp glee of hate,
I dissect you cell by cell, so that I might hate each one
individually and at leisure.
My lungs, duplicitous twins, expand with the utter validity
of my hate, which can never have enough of you,
Breathlessly, like two idealists in a broken submarine.

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42 Responses to Seething Hatred

  1. Harmreduction says:

    Your hate is only poisioning you. He is grieving. You do not require “things” in order to grieve. Maxs’ books are not, can not be Max. Fuel your grieving process with your rage if need be, but please, do yourself no more harm. Your ex will not die from your poision, but you could. THAT would dishonour your sons memory, and your love, devotion, and great care that mothering him meant.

    Both of you deserve better.

  2. Another old biddy says:

    My commiserations, Sister Wolf. I, too, have one of these cold-hearted, self-centred, controlling men for an ex-husband.

  3. stacy says:

    I hate the physical feeling that such profound hatred manifests in my chest. It’s been awhile since I felt that degree of hatred but I’ve been there.
    Being a late comer to your blog I’ve always wondered if Max was your brother as you two look so much alike. Thank you for clarifying. My thoughts are with you.

  4. Cat says:

    With love, I have translated the two legged Rat song. Here it goes:

    Filthy Rat
    creeping animal
    scum of life
    badly made monstrosity

    specter from hell
    wicked worm
    how much damage you’ve done!

    venomous snake
    waste of life
    I hate you and I scorn you!

    two legged Rat
    I am talking to you
    because a creeping bug
    even the most damned one
    compared to you
    is still not enough

    damned leech
    damned cockroach
    that infects where it bites
    that hurts and kills

    Are you listening, you useless hyena from hell, how much I HATE you and
    how much I scorn you?

    … then it repeats the whole thing. A wonderful song IMO, I hope you find it appropriate, with mariachi and all 😉

  5. I don’t read poetry that often, but I LOVE that one. You should print it out and stick it up on the wall.

    I’m sorry he is being such an arse. Concentrate on the hating for now, and when he is over himself you’ll be able to go and get Max’s books xx

  6. There are two things I hate most in life – the first is people who control situations by passive smugness. Someone who so truly believes that they are ordered, contained and conducted themselves in a perfect manner befitting of circumstances. In this case it is passive smugness with cruelty. You need a mediator someone that can facilitate an outcome but I know this costs money or finding someone who will do this for free. Not easy but we can all hope for you on this matter.

    The second lot of hate is reserved for people who are prepared to kick someone when they are down and then become spineless and self indulgent.
    There was that classic case of that Australian woman who decided to go for you when Max died and of course you published her email address in hatred and fury – although then it must have been searing pain you felt.
    She got incredibly high faluting over an email which politely requested her to apologise and iron matters out from me. Of course she did get a heap of nasty ones to but if you throw stones etc. What amused me the most was the fact she sent me a tirade of vitriol and vileness and then went bleating to someone who gave poncey legal advice of unsolicited email crap – which was good advice if you were being harassed or stalked through no fault of you own.

    I still hate that person and probably think very poorly for anyone who sympathised with her plight because she committed the most heinous crime of kicking someone when down – when a mother loses a child.

    The love of a mother for a child, in particular their first born is extraordinary. It is impossible to put in to words.

    Rest assured Sister Wolf these two examples of behaviour never go unpunished – they will suffer in some way due to their own actions. I don’t and wouldn’t wish hurt and pain on anyone but one thing is true you always reap what you sow and that saying derives from all cultures, faiths and beliefs.

    Kindness costs nothing and when people are unkind or cruel on any level you have to rise above it or challenge them according to circumstances. I don’t think you can rise above this as it is cruelty beyond but you need to find a way to challenge.

    I’m so sorry I can’t help you on this one due to geography etc. I can’t imagine how awful it is but Max is not defined by his belongings, holding them won’t bring him back. He is with you. Make a list of the books you want to read of his and gets up to send you replacement Max copies – he can guide us to pick out the best ones for you

  7. Sister Wolf says:

    Harmreduction – Oh fuck you. What gives you the right to lecture me? Unless you have lost a child, or you know the circumstances between my ex and his son, you should show some respect by shutting up. Just read the poem, if you can put down your gavel.

    Another old biddy – Sorry to hear of your affliction, xo.

    Stacy – Thank you my dear.

    Cat – Wow. That’s some good Hate there, thanks!

    Penny Dreadful – It’s a great poem! I should get it laminated.

    Make DO – Do you know that woman went and offered her “services” to the crazy Texas contingent?!? She still plans to try to hurt me–a lunatic I can only surmise. I forgot that you had to deal with her.

    If everyone could be as loyal, supportive and compassionate as you Kate, this world would be a paradise. You’re right, of course. Max wanted me to read Othello and Moby Dick so I can get them from the library. xo

  8. Ann says:

    What a shit. I’m so sorry. How fucking dare he.

    What else besides Othello and Moby Dick? I love Kate’s idea of making a list so some of us can send them to you.

    I love you xo

  9. Sister Wolf says:

    Ann – I love you too. I almost called you but I didn’t think it was fair to you. xoxoxoxoxo

  10. Queen Marie says:

    Please do make a list as per Kate’s wonderful suggestion.


  11. the real andrea says:

    That poem is a gem! Print it up and frame it for your wall. While getting your feelings out and having your readers commiserate with you can give you strength, you still have a right to go through your son’s things. You were his mother! I had the same issue with my mentally ill brother. After my mom, and then my dad, passed away, I wanted to go through their things and take what a motherand a father would leave a daughter. To this day, I don’t have anything that belonged to my parents, which hurts a lot. He has everything! (but he is still a miserable piece of shit). I was going to sue him for it but I let it go. There must be a way for you to to get a lawyer to make this happen without it costing a lot of money. (If I were a lawyer, I would do it for you for free). Do you know anyone who is?

  12. Lara says:

    That poem made me smile – completely articulating my full-bodied hatred for my own ex-husband. I wish there was a word stronger than hate sometimes.

    I don’t think your ex’s attitude towards you has anything to do with grief. He’s just being the same son of a bitch you divorced. He may never change so yes, let us know what books Max wanted you to read.

  13. Bevitron says:

    What the fuck? Is there some reason he can’t be human? Is he playing out some old shit on the field of your anguish and grief? That is the lowest of the low. I’m so sorry you’re being put through that hateful, evil crap.

    I love that wonderful idea of the list, too. Count me in for sending books.

  14. Ann says:

    Sister Wolf, please know you can call me at any time, for any reason. I am with you always and I mean it. I will call you this evening so we can catch up. I love you very, very much and send you through the miles every bit of good energy I’ve got.

  15. liz says:

    it’s painful to read that, it makes me want to scream, to find him and strike him and shake him into reality. It’s like when I watch curb your enthusiasm, and larry david’s actions make me so incredibly uncomfortable and angry and I just start screaming at the television BE NORMAL and BE HUMAN. irrationality makes me so tense and anxious and uncomfortable and mad, and I cant with your ex, he is the epitome of irrational and controlling and horrible, just horrible, and I am so very sorry you have to deal with him.

  16. Dru says:

    I’m sorry you have to go through all of this, Sister. It’s just so unfair to you, after all you’ve been through already.

    I’m all on board with being a book-sender too, count me in.

  17. patni says:

    What a total fucker.
    You should totally make a list, I have hoards and hoards of books, and would love to send you some. Reading is aside from anything a brilliant distraction. And Othello was so awesomely nasty.
    And hate on. You have reason, and anyway, what do you do? when you feel it you feel it. You cant just say I won’t feel something today. You just do.

  18. patni says:

    The Count of Monte Cristo is my favorite revenge story ever btw. It can be quite therapeutic.

  19. Winterbird says:

    Your ex is a cunt. I want you to stay away from his house as there will be a pox upon it any day now. Just remember beautiful sister, that Max passed through YOUR body, which is something no one can ever take from you.

  20. Tanya says:

    What a dick boil. You mentioned he is older. Any chance he might shrivel up and expire soon?! These barely emotive, spiteful, English breakfast-consuming wastes of space are not generally destined for long life spans. ( I assume a sausage-heavy diet. )

  21. Harmreduction says:


    i am sorry to have offended.
    i lost my daughter when she was killed by my then husband.
    You will CLEARLY find your own way through.

  22. candy says:

    He IS AN ASSHOLE! some people don’t deserve attention but in this case I do understand that you still talk to him, he has Max’s things, he should give them to you! Fuck! what’s wrong with this man! Gosh! I noticed that in adversity we are surrounded by mean people. I do hope you get Max’s things back. He is a mean person and I think he blames you for something. That’s the feeling I have. Intelligent people should understand that we could share the sadness we have in common by just being nice to each other, EVEN IF WE HATE EACH OTHER! My husband told me that if we separate we will never talk again! crazy! I don’t understand this world anymore.

  23. Sister Wolf says:

    Harmreduction – Oh no, that is terrible, I see you are only trying to share some hard-earned wisdom. I’m so sorry this happened, and if you have found a way to cope somehow, I am both relieved and inspired.

    Lara – Yes, you’re right, probably just the same traits I alway hated, thanks for reminding me.

  24. Emily says:

    I reserve some of my most burning vitriol for the kind of person that bullies someone by saying “I won’t let you bully me.” It’s classic smug, childish hypocrisy and it absolutely enrages me.

    “My voice curt as a hairshirt: hate.
    My hesitation when you invite me for a drive: hate.
    My pleasant “good morning”: hate.”

    This fragment spoke to me the most.

  25. cybill says:

    I wish for your ex-husband the worlds most painful, excruciating, not even a doughnut pillow will help – case of hemorrhoids ever.

  26. K-Line says:

    Sister: That poem is a work of art. I only wish you weren’t having to feel it to write it. I really hope that ex finds some generosity of spirit and decency.

  27. Jennifer says:

    You are owed. You have the right to grieve in all the ways you need to. Fuck anyone who tries to control your love for your son. Sorry, not very intellectual, but whatever. JS

  28. Aja says:

    Did he at least tell you why? It doesn’t matter. Get the books from the library. Let him know that his actions WILL NOT get the best of you. Thinking of you. xo.

  29. danno says:

    If possible could you exchange Max’s belonging for a promise to never call him again?

  30. Sister Wolf says:

    Bevitron – I like your question. Nope, he can’t act like a human. He has always been this way. I wonder why I keep expecting him to be normal. I have trouble remembering that people don’t usually change, and certainly not just because you want them to.

    I am going to keep hating him, but I will give up the idea of being allowed into his house or communicating with him.

    Things are just things, I guess.

  31. Tanya says:

    I feel hatred for him every time I read your words. Injustice = so much anger. There is, what I believe to be, ultimate wisdom within your assessment (“it is what it is” – i hate the saying,) BUT it is beyond difficult to accept the axiom when applying it to one’s own circumstances. How does a person get past the anger? Is it just thought-guided practice? I doubt it, only because at the end of it all there’s no God. Letting go is, or seems, just fucking impossible.
    Anyway, sign me up for the book donation list. I was wondering if Max ever liked any Dostoyevsky. I’ve been trying to find some good translations.

    I feel devastated when I consider your loss. (Please don’t take offense-I don’t mean to trivialize your pain in some bullshit histrionic fashion, because I have no fucking clue.) I confess that I’ve cried over it, crazy as it may seem. I really just feel sad that there is one less good person left in the world. I feel more sad that there’s a good person left to suffer it. The anger needs to go somewhere; it may as well head in the direction of the ex.


  32. Iheartfashion says:

    Love you, Sister.

  33. Devin says:

    Hate is a waste of energy to your asshat of an ex- and he sounds like he likes to have that power/control over you, which is also gross. You should focus your energy on other things and thus take away the power he has over your emotions. It will work in your favor, I believe. Seriously though- you have every right to feel as you do. He’s being a dick and he should have some fucking respect for the mother of his child. People can be so cruel.

    I only say this thing about the hatred because I’ve been going through it personally, and only recently did I let go (somewhat- it’s really really hard!) of the hate, and my life has started to feel better.

    You will get his things eventually. Sorry you have to go through this!

  34. Suspended says:

    I say fuck him, take it up a notch ad break in while he’s at work…maybe even do a shit on his pillow.

    Remember you are rock ‘n’ roll!

    Ok, maybe not.

  35. Marky says:

    He’s clearly still threatened by you for some reason, and he needs to have the power. He sounds like a giant, British baby. I’m sorry. You should have access to Max’s belongings.

    I wonder what the legality of all this is. I mean, can he legally deny you access to Max’s belongings?

    Fuck the legality, could you gain access to his place while he’s at work?

  36. Maria says:

    You are extraordinary witty, I really enjoy reading your blog Sister Wolf. But hating consumes you and leaves you with nothing. Keep going lady, keep strong.

  37. The Girl says:

    My heart breaks for you 🙁 No mother should be in that position ever. Thanks for sharing the hate poem- perfectly sums up the feeling

  38. Kathleen says:

    It’s natural to feel what you feel- there is nothing more annoying than someone else like harmreduction telling you how you should feel.

  39. suzbee says:

    In my book, nothing beats Blake’s “Poison Tree” for a hate poem.

  40. Hammie says:

    Is there anyone who could act as an intermediary to contact him and offer to collect some of Max’s things on your behalf. He won’t have to see you or confront whatever issues he still has. And it will be harder for him to be mean to a semi- impartial 3rd party. .?

  41. Rainbo says:

    Sister Wolf – You’re awesome. I am so sorry for the loss of your precious son. My heart is breaking for you. Your ex husband is a douchebag. I cannot STAND deliberate cruelty, and smugness, either. I freaking LOVED the poem, and only found your blog, because I was looking for posts about seething hatred. LOL. I am feeling it towards an ex lover, but still….I get it. I so get it. Feel free to write to me, any time.

  42. Keith Hayon says:

    Like the post above, this post was found based on a search for seething energies of hate. This is perhaps more important than you are aware, or perhaps you have had the chance to understand that these emotions are extremely powerful. Luckily, my recent surge of emotion is not directed at an individual, but a collective attitude of an undeserving people. A people that has become so delusional in their active approach to public activities that they only exist in a public atmosphere to test the bounds of their introverted self. It’s profoundly sad to the point where it’s inexcusable. And the saddest part of all, is that I have nothing but complete respect for every living soul. This civilization is truly lost in a dimension that demands respect.

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