The Awakening – Sarah Ritter

This morning, I woke up tired. Not just sleepy, or in a lingering trance from the previous night’s fading dreams. My head felt like it was filled with a thick fog, and my eyes were unwelcoming of the morning’s blinding sun beams.

Today begins another day of the same old routine and I was tired of it. I was tired of living as a woman in a man’s world. I was tired of being summed up by the opinions of men who can’t handle my confidence. I was tired of my decisions being questioned. I was tired of my orders being defied by insubordination and chauvinism. I was tired of being expected to act like a lady but keep up with the guys. I was tired of being told that the insults laced with sarcasm are just jokes. I was tired of my feelings and emotions being laughed off as a weakness.

But I get up and go through the routine of my day, with walls around my heart, and swords in my back pocket, ready to defend myself at a moment’s notice. I put on a strong front and hide the emotions coursing through my body. I do this hour after hour, till all that I have to and want to do are done.

But as the day came to an exhausting close, I feel the weight of my sleepy eyelids, the impending headache and the humming ache of my heart. I realize I am done feeling this way. I am done living in constant conflict and reservation, doubt and insecurity. I am tired of my attitude being altered by patronage and condescension. I am tired of my choices coming second after others.

Because I know that I am strong. I am smart. I am confident. I will not let others define me. I have opinions I am not afraid to express. I make decisions that I do not regret. I have feelings that I am not ashamed of.

I decide then that I will no longer allow the insecurity and arrogance of others dictate my life. I am a woman, and I am strong. I will not let others decide the worthiness of my love, the value of my voice, the merit of my contributions. I will not let others ridicule my choices.

In those final moments of the night, as the sky turned to black and the stars started to peek out from behind the trees, I felt this resolve wash over my body. In my moment of the awakening, I felt my mind clear, and my heart lift. I felt the clouds of doubt and uncertainty part. I felt the promise of the twinkling stars. I fell asleep then, with a renewed purpose to live my life loudly, boldly and peacefully.

Sarah Ritter is a writer and poet whose first poetry collection “Inspirations, Transformations and Revelations: A Poetic Expression of My Personal Journey,” was published in March 2019. In her spare time she writes for her online blog and creates homemade greeting cards.

You can read more of her writing at Sarah Ritter’s Revelations…A Collection of My Poems & Short Stories


Christine’s Daily Writing Prompt: The Bluest Eye

Throughout the month of August, Christine will be providing a daily writing prompt based on the title of a seminal feminist book. These are designed to inspire you to write a poem, prose piece, or a piece of flash fiction in 30 minutes or less.

The only rule is that you use the book title as your piece title OR integrate all the words in the title into your piece somehow

If you would like to have your piece considered for publication on Brave and Reckless and Whisper and the Roar, email your prompt inspired pieces to Christine at

You can also participate on Facebook by tagging your writing with:

  • # the title of the daily theme
  • #FeministBookChallenge
  • #braveandreckless66

or on Instagram by tagging your writing with:

  • # the title of the daily theme
  • #FeministBookChallenge
  • @christabelle1966

You can also share your response pieces in the comments below the Daily Prompt.


Featured Post: The Awakening II– Georgiann Carlson

a lot of people
don’t want to wake up
it’s cozy and nicer
keeping their eyes closed
especially since
once they’re open
they can never close them again
nicer not to talk about the abuse and
the ugly things that happen to women
in our world
after all
It’s unpleasant
it’s not positive
or uplifting
it’s not what people want to
it’s depressing
even un-ladylike

it’s so much better to
and discuss
the latest this
or that
to talk about the weather
or who did what
and enjoying
never mind that the woman
sitting across from them each week
always wears long sleeve
turtleneck shirts
because her husband beats her
The Awakening
when it arrives
doesn’t let people look away
even if it’s not happening to
being awake
simply means facing the facts
so something can be done
to change them


I’m an artist, a writer, a vegetarian, an animal rights activist, and quite a few other things as well. I love books, cats, philosophy, good conversation, Chicago and the arts. So my blog is full of bits and pieces but it’s the bits and pieces that make life interesting to me. You can read more of my writing at Rethinking Life

Featured Post: The Awakening – Tamara Fricke

Velvet has a subtle way
of scratching neglected angles
thought hidden, laying bare
imperfections once declared
hallmarks of originality
leaving one scarred, creased, and scared
in the floodlights of public opinion.

Satins and silks are no better,
sliding as they do, snagging
on every hangnail feathered edge
running off to tell the neighbors
there’s a pimple on your ass
worth debating.

Now cotton, loves your hips
but do you ever wear it without
thinking of cotton-ginned machinations,
blood and heat commingling
making a mockery of 300 years
with it’s rosette patterns and
floral bouquets?

The truth is your skin is
salted perfection, texturized
to highlight every precious
imperfection and perfectly
encapsulating your singularity,
your contradiction of simultaneous
infinite and finite-ness that
no fabric should ever hide.

Tamara Fricke is the 2010 co-winner of the Gertrude Claytor Award of the Academy of American Poets and is previously published by The Lyon Review, Meat for Tea, Attack Bear Press Poetry Vending Machine, Whisper and the Roar, We Will Not Be Silenced, and has been included in a number of compilations.  Her poetry chapbook Our Requiem was released in 2014.  She lives in Springfield, MA, with an ungrateful cat, where she writes grants professionally.

Featured Post: The Awakening – Georgiann Carlson

The Awakening
is women
and taking back
their power
it’s seeing the lies
and refusing to continue
playing the patriarchal game
it’s coming into our own
it’s giving ourselves a chance
to find out who we are
and what we can do
it’s the path toward freedom



I’m an artist, a writer, a vegetarian, an animal rights activist, and quite a few other things as well. I love books, cats, philosophy, good conversation, Chicago and the arts. So my blog is full of bits and pieces but it’s the bits and pieces that make life interesting to me. You can read more of my writing at Rethinking Life

Featured Post: We Should All Be Feminists – Robert G Wertzler

Should we all be feminists?
Some, many, too many ask, “Why?”
They ask the wrong question
Better to turn that around
Stand it on its head
Ask, “Why not?”
That one tells the tale
Of the illusion of male
Myths of a God
Without a Goddess
The Father
The Mother
A universe out of balance
A world, a realm of Life
Men may
Carve up
Own bits of to
Dig up
Dump on
Kill over
Because Earth
Is a Woman
Mother of Life
And so, fair game
Like all women
That is the answer
To, “Why not?”
And the answer to “Why?”
Is to heal the damage
Restore the balance
Between men and women
As between Humans
And the only home we know
The Mother of all


Bob Wertzler is retired from almost twenty years in the mental health field in California and Arizona. There are times the title, “Recovering Therapist”, seems to fit. In 2006 he retired to move to Western North Carolina to help and become primary care giver for his father who had developed Dementia. Before all that, there was work at various times as a soldier (US Army 1967-70), community organizer, cab driver, welfare case worker, wooden toy maker, carpenter, warehouse worker, and other things. He relates to a line in a Grateful Dead song, “What a long, strange trip its been.”