As I sweep the ashes from my inner hearth, I wince in pain--there are still embers burning, traces of old and new anger that haven't burned out.
What is one to do with old, stubborn fire? I could throw water on the embers, but then I'd have to wait for the hearth to dry out again, and I'd also have a considerable mess to deal with.
Alternatively, I could fan the embers with fresh air--encourage them to burn hotter. Bursting into flame, they will burn hotter and faster, and soon will turn to cool ash, allowing me to clear the way for a new flame to alight there.
It seems counter-intuitive to nurse embers of anger into full flame, and yet it is a singularly efficient way to make the vital task of hearth-sweeping possible.
So I fan the flame, nursing my anger that it might burn away at long last.