“For Strong Women”
Excerpts of this poem are from the collection The Moon Is Always Female by Marge Piercy.
A strong woman is a woman who loves
strongly and weeps strongly and is strongly
terrified and has strong needs. A strong woman is strong
in words, in action, in connection, in feeling;
she is not strong as a stone but as a wolf
suckling her young. Strength is not in her, but she
enacts it as the wind fills a sail.
What comforts her is others loving
her equally for the strength and for the weakness
from which it issues, lightning from a cloud.
Strong is what we make
each other. Until we are all strong together,
a strong woman is a woman strongly afraid.
Photographs from Thrums Books: Faces of Tradition: Weaving Elders of the Andes; Maya Threads: A Woven History of Chiapas; Traditional Weavers of Guatemala: Their Stories, Their Lives; and Textile Traditions of Chinchero: A Living Heritage.