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acerb/acerbic: acerb/acerbic: 1. Sour or bitter tasting; acid. 2. Sharp or biting, as in character or expression: "At times, the playwright allows an acerbic tone to pierce through otherwise arid or flowery prose" (Alvin Klein). American Heritage Dictionary
I only ask to be free. The butterflies ... I only ask to be free. The butterflies are free. Mankind will surely not deny to Harold Skimpole what it concedes to the butterflies! Charles Dickens Bleak House