If you’re looking to smash the patriarchy and read some fantastic poetry at the same time, I have got some great reading recommendations for you.
The Harp-Weaver, and Other Poems (1923), Edna St. Vincent Millay
I, being born a woman and distressed
By all the needs and notions of my kind,
Am urged by your propinquity to find
Your person fair, and feel a certain zest
To bear your body’s weight upon my breast:
So subtly is the fume of life designed,
To clarify the pulse and cloud the mind,
And leave me once again undone, possessed.
Think not for this, however, the poor treason
Of my stout blood against my staggering brain,
I shall remember you with love, or season
My scorn with pity,—let me make it plain:
I find this frenzy insufficient reason
For conversation when we meet again.
Complete Poems (1955), Emily Dickinson
She rose to his requirement, dropped
The playthings of her life
To take the honorable work
Of woman and of wife.
If aught she missed in her new day
Of amplitude, or awe,
Or first prospective, or the gold
In using wore away,
It lay unmentioned, as the sea
Develops pearl and weed,
But only to himself is known
The fathoms they abide.
Still I Rise (1978), Maya Angelou
Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
It’s in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
The Collected Poems of Audre Lorde (1997), Audre Lorde
I have been woman
for a long time
beware my smile
I am treacherous with old magic
and the noon’s new fury
with all your wide futures
and not white.
Eating Fire: Selected Poems 1965 – 1995 (1998), Margaret Atwood
You think I’m not a goddess?
This is a torch song.
Touch me and you’ll burn.
The World’s Wife (1999), Carol Ann Duffy
So imagine me there,
[...] in the one place you’d think a girl would be safe
from the kind of a man
who follows her round
while she reads them,
calls her His Muse,
and once sulked for a night and a day
because she remarked on his weakness for abstract nouns.
Just picture my face
when I heard -
Ye Gods -
a familiar knock-knock at Death’s door.
Ariel (2004), Sylvia Plath
Herr God, Herr Lucifer
Out of the ash
I rise with my red hair
And I eat men like air.
Becoming The Villainess (2006), Jeannine Hall Gailey
You never rescue us, always ten minutes too late.
You find the note on the counter about a surprise in the fridge.
And in the next frame the surprise, the punchline:
Susan or Sally hacked to pieces, left to chill.
Teaching My Mother How To Give Birth (2011), Warsan Shire
To my daughter I will say,
‘when men come, set yourself on fire’.
New Selected Poems (2013), Eavan Boland
I climb the stairs and stand where I can see
my child asleep beside her teen magazines,
her can of Coke, her plate of uncut fruit.
The pomegranate! How did I forget it?
She could have come home and been safe
and ended the story and all
our heart-broken searching but she reached
out a hand and plucked a pomegranate.