By: Tess Gallagher


I go to the mountain side

of the house to cut saplings,

and clear a view to snow

on the mountain. But when I look up,

saw in hand, I see a nest clutched in

the uppermost branches.

I don't cut that one.

I don't cut the others either.

Suddenly, in every tree,

an unseen nest

where a mountain

would be.

About Tess Gallagher

The poet Tess Gallagher, one of the leading figures in the America feminist literary movement that began in the mid 1970's, was born in 1943 in Port Angeles, Washington, to a logging family. Gallagher began her writing career at age sixteen as a reporter for the Port Angeles Daily News. Her interest in journalism led her to enroll in the University of Washington, where Theodore Roethke, sparked her to take interest in poetry.

Theme The Poem

Life is a compilation of interwoven complexities, creating a fabric of existence, and if one looks close enough value comes from conscious choices. Tess Gallagher’s poem “Choices” is a narrative that provides a vehicle for the speaker to examine the importance of gauging all aspects of a situation before diving in with blind ambition.
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