Women are a creative bunch. Female influences can be found in all the arts, such as the paintings of Frida Kahlo, films by Sofia Coppola, and even music by Dolly Parton. And in the literature world, there are must-read female poems you may find incredibly insightful.
Poetry is a matter of life, not just a matter of language.— Lucille Clifton, American poet, writer, and educator
Poetry has its benefits. It takes the chaos of life and expresses it in more meaningful and relatable ways. Not only that, but reading and writing poems can develop your sense of empathy.
“The Time of the Awakened Woman” by Dr. Shefali Tsabary
If you’re looking to pluck empowerment quotes from a poem by a Mindvalley author, rest assured, Dr. Shefali Tsabary has got you covered. Why? Her poem, “The Time of the Awakened Woman,” is a celebration of women’s power and potential.
It’s a call to action, per se, for women to look the “brules” (bullsh*t rules imposed by society) in the face and declare, “No more!” It’s time for them to embrace their true selves, rise up and use their gifts, and take their rightful place in the world.
There comes a time in the life of a woman
When she no longer fears conflict but faces it boldly like a lioness
When she guards her authenticity as fearlessly as she guards her babies
And when she drops the role of savior knowing she can only save herself
Her poem can be found in her book, A Radical Awakening: Turn Pain Into Power, Embrace Your Truth, Live Free.
“When the Fat Girl Gets Skinny” by Blythe Baird
Saying female body types are constantly under a microscope is an understatement. Too fat, too skinny, too muscular, and so many other physical aspects are being scrutinized. (No thanks to the media and the fashion companies for presenting the “ideal” body in their marketing campaigns.)
Blythe Baird’s “When the Fat Girl Gets Skinny” is one of the best female empowerment poems that describes how we, as a society, believe that losing weight is the ultimate goal for happiness. The reality is that—and the poem highlights this—the most important thing, above all, is to accept yourself.
As a child, Fat was the first word people used to describe me,
which didn’t offend me until I found out it was supposed to.
The poem was turned into a short film, which won the 2017 ADCAN film award for the National Eating Disorder Association.
“As You Go Through Life” by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Chances are, you’ve been in situations where you’re afraid to take risks. What if something goes wrong? What if you get hurt? What if…?
Ella Wheeler Wilcox is one of many great women poets who write about how important it is to take advantage of everything life has to offer.
Don’t look for the flaws as you go through life;
And even when you find them,
It is wise and kind to be somewhat blind
And look for the virtue behind them.
Her poem, “As You Go Through Life,” is a message of hope and resilience. It encourages you to learn how to open your heart to the beauty of life and trust that the journey, as well as the destination, will be a beautiful one.
“If I Should Have a Daughter” by Sarah Kay
If you have a daughter, or if you dream of having one someday, what would you want to teach her about life and love? That’s the basis of Sarah Kay’s poem, “If I Should Have a Daughter.”
It shines a light on motherhood, femininity, and how important it is to teach the next generation that self-love comes with strength and empowerment. What’s more, its message acts as a reminder of the powerful role mothers can play in shaping the future of the next generation of women.
When you open your hands to catch and wind up with only blisters and bruises;
when you step out of the phone booth and try to fly and the very people you want to save are the ones standing on your cape;
when your boots will fill with rain, and you’ll be up to your knees in disappointment.
And those are the very days you have all the more reason to say thank you.
Sarah shared this poem at TED 2011.
Rupi Kaur’s Short Poem About Being Enough
If you’re yet to familiarize yourself with one of the more phenomenal women poets of today, you’re in for a treat. Meet Rupi Kaur, a poet, artist, performer, and the #1 New York Times best-selling author.
The interesting thing about most of her poems is that they’re nameless. Regardless, they speak to the inner voice of your self-doubt—the belief that you are not good enough.
This poem is short and sweet, but it is a powerful reminder that you are unique and that you deserve love and respect. There’s no reason whatsoever to let your inner critic hold you back.
If you are broken
And they have left you
Do not question
Whether you were
The problem was
You were so enough
They were not able to carry it
This particular poem can be found in her book, milk and honey.
“The Hill We Climb” by Amanda Gorman
“The Hill We Climb” is one of the most famous female poems in the modern era. It talks about the need for unity and healing in the United States, especially at a time when the country is in conflict.
It’s a call to action, per se, for the country to come together and rise above its differences. And with the strength and resilience to keep climbing, there’s a better future on the horizon, no matter how steep the “hill” may seem.
We close the divide because we know, to put our future first, we must first put our differences aside.
We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another.
We seek harm to none and harmony for all.
Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true:
That even as we grieved, we grew.
That even as we hurt, we hoped.
That even as we tired, we tried.
That we’ll forever be tied together, victorious.
“The Hill We Climb” was written and performed by Amanda Gorman at the 2021 United States Presidential Inauguration.
“Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou
If there’s ever a poem celebrating the resilience and strength of the human spirit, it’s got to be Maya Angelou’s “Still I Rise.” No matter what challenges you face, this poem tells you to find the strength inside you to overcome and win.
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.
“Still I Rise” is a powerful anthem to never, ever give up. Because remember: you have it in you to rise above whatever the world may throw at you and succeed.
Your Greatness Lies In You
Women have long had to fight for their voices to be heard, and female poems are a reflection of the struggles and triumphs of this journey. So it goes without saying that female poets are extremely powerful.
The thing about women is that they have a way to connect with us on a deep emotional level. And if you’d like to step into your greatness, you can seek guidance and inspiration from the incredible female force at Mindvalley.
- Kristina Mänd-Lakhiani in the Live by Your Own Rules Quest. You’ll learn how to get rid of the masks society gives you, figure out what your own truths are, and take care of your relationship with yourself.
- Lisa Nichols in the Speak and Inspire Quest. You’ll learn how to find your authentic voice and confidently speak your truth to inspire those around you.
- Dr. Shefali Tsabary in the Conscious Parenting Mastery Quest. You’ll learn how to heal your inner child so you can show up with compassion and empathy for your actual child in every stage of their growth.
- Katherine Woodward Thomas in the Calling In the One Quest. You’ll learn how to discover what you truly want, heal past wounds, and open yourself to love.
- Maye Musk in the 7 Rules of Life Quest. You’ll learn how to harness the simple, yet hard-earned rules she has embodied throughout her lifetime to step into a life of fullness.
- Rachel Pringle in the Wild Woman Sensuality Quest. You’ll learn how to release your inner blocks and reawaken every aspect of your whole, including your body, sexual energy, intuition, mind, and soul.
- And many more…
The wonderful thing is that you can gain access to sample lessons from these quests when you sign up for a free account.
Even in those few bite-sized pearls of wisdom, you’ll see that these female powerhouses can turn their emotional experiences into words that are transcendent, evocative, and often healing. It taps into the universal experiences that make us all human.
And that, you beautiful creature, is the power of the feminine.