We asked issue 10 contributor Jen Rouse to talk about what feminism means to her and her female influences in this short Q&A. Read her responses and listen to her recording of “The Solitary” by Sara Teasdale below.
Pretty Owl Poetry: What does feminism mean to you?
Jen: Feminism means being present as a woman and recognizing all of the many experiences in life that women of all backgrounds face. To reach out and fight and cry and be a warrior, sometimes a silent warrior, letting so many more voices speak because my white voice has always been too privileged in this movement.
POP: Who are some of your female influences? (writers, musicians, personal heroes, etc.)
J: Writers: Adrienne Rich and Audre Lorde
Musicians: Tina Turner
Personal Heroes: Director Janeve West; Singer, Actor, and Producer Jane Pini; Madeline Rouse, my daughter
POP: What moments in your personal history as a woman stand out to you?
J: Publishing my first book of poetry with a lesbian press–Headmistress Press. The moment when my daughter was born and the rest of the world slipped away because she was so powerful, so perfect.