We Should All Be Feminists – Christine E. Ray


adjective Sometimes fem·i·nis·tic.
advocating social, political, legal, and economic rights for women equal to those of men.

an advocate of such rights.

I keep my feminist agenda
clearly displayed
on the refrigerator
whimsical magnets
holding it firmly in place
much to the discomfort
of those visitors
who are convinced
that feminists have no
sense of humor
I would like to say
that I cross items
off the list daily
but combatting toxic masculinity
eliminating outdated gender roles
stomping out rape culture
and smashing the patriarchy
are a lifetime commitment
visitors are also flummoxed
to see my bra lying
on the stairs
perhaps they are surprised
that a self-declared feminist
actually owns a bra
or perhaps they are
confusing me with
a stereotypical gay man
no one would ever
accuse me
of being tidy
my bra and I
have a love-hate relationship
or is it a
hate-hate relationship?
I hate the bra
but I hate the laws of gravity
even more
speaking of gay men
I think most people
really don’t care
who puts what where
when two or more
consenting adults
are behind closed doors
I think homophobic men
are obsessed with the notion
that a man
attracted to
another man
could be perceived
as dainty
dare I say?
we wouldn’t want that now
would we?

© 2019 Christine Elizabeth Ray – All Rights Reserved
Image courtesy of Pinterest


To gentlemen on dance floors everywhere – Kristiana Reed

To gentlemen on dance floors everywhere:

Fuck off.

No, seriously. Please keep

your bump and grind stare

to yourself.

Perhaps I’m not wearing

any underwear

but I didn’t come here to share.

I came here to dance and

drink until I’m silly,

not the ‘liability’ you’ll claim

as your lion’s share – and

try to take.

If you haven’t yet realised

I’m using the term ‘gentlemen’

loosely, because chivalry

is not dead,

you just haven’t learnt it yet;

and I don’t mean door holding

and jacket offering –

No, I mean personal space

for each of my hands,

my ribcage and raging breath.

I mean having conversations

which don’t have forks in the roads,

yet no matter what I choose

in your head, both lead to sex.

I mean dancing on my own

because I decided long ago

this body is good enough for me

and me only,

and even if you ask politely

I’m still not obligated

to give any of it, to you.

Kristiana Reed day dreams, people watches in coffee shops, teaches English and writes. She is a curator on Blood into Ink, a collective member of The Whisper and the Roar & Sudden Denouement, and blogs at My Screaming Twenties. She is 24 and is enjoying the journey which is finding her voice.

Response Poem: Made for Him- Christine Ray

The video for Niia’s Made for You is one of the most disturbing, provocative and mesmerizing music videos I have ever seen. I could not look away even when I wanted to.  It inspired my response poem below.

TRIGGER WARNING: This is not an easy video for rape survivors, victims of childhood sexual abuse or domestic violence— but damn did it make me think and feel.

She hangs on a hook

Suspended animation

Not considered alive


Until he walks into the room

He calls her Doll

Relishes her plastic perfection

The eyes that will never cry

He caresses her once

Before brutally meeting his needs

He can unleash his beast

Without restraint or care

She is shell with no voice

She cannot protest


She longs to shower when it is over

Wash off his stink

Her bile

The others surround them


Trapped in horrified silence

Throats without voice boxes

Limbs limp

Eyes that cannot turn away

They wait for the next man

To size them up

And decide which one of them

Is made for him


Image courtesy of Pinterest

© 2017 Christine Elizabeth Ray – All Rights Reserved

Feminism is my Realism- Kindra M. Austin & Christine Ray



I am Organism


Defense Mechanism


Feminism is my Realism


Because #MeToo, Motherfuckers

I’ve been abused

Been paid less cash

Called a Radical Cunt a

Bleeding Heart Liberal and

Put in my place—

Not my place, but theirs


I’ve been judged by the size of my body and clothes I wear

Been held back by (un)intelligent men and even stupider women

Who mock my Heart and Common Sense—

Slammed by Pseudo-Brain influenced by Meme Culture


I am Organism polluting the Cesspool

Feminism is my Realism

(Kindra M. Austin)

I am Organism


Defense Mechanism


Feminism is my Realism


Because if I had been paid my 80 cents on the dollar

For every time I have been called



Ball breaker

Since I was 12 years old

I’d be in the damn 1%


Told my whole life

That I am

Too angry

Too emotional

Too loud

Too direct

Ask too many questions

Why-can’t-you-just- sit-quietly-like-a-lady-and-smile-more?


Gagged with guilt to keep the peace


so others can maintain the precious status quo


I am Virus circulating in the Bloodstream

Feminism is my Realism

(Christine Ray)

these days when you have a daughter – Samantha Lucero

these days when

These days when you have a daughter
You don’t need to worry about if she can fit
a bracelet around her waist in a finely boned corset
the color of teeth and blood
Whether she’ll marry a farmer or an aristocrat
Have 3 boys and 1 girl
Because the world always needs more men
To be aristocrats and marry little girls
Nor do you have to worry about her burning at the stake
For making eyes at the pastors wife and
Wearing a red ribbon in her hair
You’ll have to tell her it’s okay to say GET THE FUCK AWAY
to the guy who sits way too close on the train
When the train is empty and you’re alone
With a knife you left at home
and the mace your boyfriend said you’d never need
You’ll have to tell her college is important
Because if you don’t have it written down
your mind doesn’t exist
You don’t have to be the supermodel in the magazine with the thin thighs
But you can be the super-girl who has the strong legs to run from all the
until you get back home and find your knife and
That the world will lie in your lap like a cat that purrrrrrs
That you can’t help but pet because it’s just so fucking soft
Even tho it bites and can and will use its claws when you least
expect it because Life’s like that — that’s how I had you
And when life’s bad you’ll wonder why you’re here and why you had no choice to be
And me as your mother will say
But I love you

Girls have to stick together
Instead of fall apart in each other’s hands
And if it means anything
No matter where you go, what happens
You are the only perfect thing to ever lie in my lap.

Samantha Lucero likes… uhhh… cats, and can never think of what to say about herself, she writes at sixredseeds, sometimes and is a managing editor at the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective.

Silence Will No Longer Ring in My Ears- Christine Ray

I will not be silent

I will not maintain the peace

I will say the ugly words

out loud and I will not flinch







Domestic Violence


Discounted simply because we are women


To find our voices as women

to speak our truth

is a revolutionary act

that says that your voice

her voice

their voices

my voice



Have weight

Deserve to be heard

Are valid


If my refusal to be silent

Makes me a bitch

A shrew

A ball-breaker

Then I will be loudest damn badass bitch that I can be


Silence leaves us to blame ourselves in isolation

Silence benefits only those who have hurt us

Silence has been the noose around my neck

The soul ache of my pent-up screams of rage

Every 13th story window I have considered walking out of


How fucked up is that?!


© 2017 Christine Elizabeth Ray – All rights Reserved

Christine Ray writes for Brave and Reckless and is a member of Sudden Denouement.  She is also curator at Blood Into Ink and barista at Go Dog Go Cafe.  She is an aspiring badass.

Venus Envy- Max Meunier

how does this chromosome composed immarcescible
yield compromise in cries of flesh
wrapped in skin of scolded scandal
spurned escape from brute contempt

giver of all life yet none dare ponder
the light which begets all things known
the home from whence all journeys burgeon
the earthen arms embracing death

brandishing indelible burdens
wrought by hands of ransom’s scourge
forging millennia evincing incorrigible
horrors of abhorrent travesty

torrid envy trained on Venus
flourishing afire eternal
seething like celestial wreaths
breathing in nebulous ire

solace yet denied
til stellar flight again reigns in angelic
denizens deprived of dignity
by these depraved barbarians

Max states: “I write about the things going on in my life. I am a feminist, humanist, cat loving musician bound by whimsy and the incessant analysis of hyper-vigilant observations.  I am obsessed with words and rhythmically woven wordplay.” We are honored to have him as a member of our tribe.  He writes at Max Meunier/Remnants from the Realm of Dissociation

An Education- Christine Ray



We came of age

in miniskirts

lace gloves

ruffled anklets

beneath our high heels

desperately wanting to be Susan

before reading Rich, Friedan, Lorde

Dirty Dancing

taught us about illegal abortion

and that no one puts Baby in the corner


Politically awakened

we marched

arm in arm





braless in our

Take Back the Night tee shirts

labrys necklaces

triple pierced ears

kissing our girlfriends

boldly on the mouth in public

convinced that we were changing

the world for those

coming up behind us


Life after college

awakened us

one by one

forced us to crawl out

of our bubble wrapped ivory towers

blinking back the glare

of recognition

that power suits

and brief cases

MD or PhD after our names

did not inoculate us


Monsters we feared in the night

were evenly matched

by the casually accepted misogyny

we encountered on city streets

conference rooms

hospital ERs

court rooms

the Senate

a pestilent virus

resistant to UV rays

our oppression



was so rampant

so normalized

we forgot to blink

we didn’t think to

demand gas masks

to protect our lungs

our souls

from its toxic smog

© 2017 Christine Elizabeth Ray – All rights Reserved

Christine Ray writes for Brave and Reckless and is a member of Sudden Denouement. She is also curator at Blood Into Ink and barista at Go Dog Go Cafe.  She is an aspiring badass.

Virginity- Rishika Sangeeta

Rishika resized

they tell me my skin is parchment
meant to bear the imprint of a man’s hungry hands
that if I should come already ink stained,
a story unfurling like a runway behind me
then I am tainted, unworthy,
I carry the disease of another man’s touch on my soul
and how can that make me pure?
how can that have left me whole?

Whole for whom? I ask them.
They titter, purse their lips,
call me a child and a fool.
So I stand my ground,
craft every wound into a grenade,
turn my words into a warzone
where some find shelter,
and some find flames

I tell them I will stay
tainted as I am
I tell them that a love that cannot hold space for all of me
is not Love at all
I tell them their sons have ruined countless women already
and if there is no room for us here
then there is no forgiveness,
no absolution on Heaven or Earth
for the sins of their flesh
I tell them my body has known violence,
my heart has known loss,
and if their sons cannot see me for who I truly am
then it is I who do not want them

Rishika Sangeeta is a therapist in training and a writer of romantic prose and poetry. She spends hours in communion with the dark and her heart in a constant quest to unearth some meaning from the mayhem of living.