Tess Galagher "I Stop Writing the Poem"

Essay by winniecooperHigh School, 12th gradeB+, April 2004

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A Woman Trapped in a Slaves Body

There is only one way to interpret Tess Gallagher's poem "I Stop Writing the Poem", as a desperate cry of loneliness and despair. Gallagher's words and the sadness which lies behind them, and the deeper, darker implications that are demonstrated in her melancholy words both aid in proving the isolation of the subject. The true wretchedness that lies within "I Stop Writing the Poem," is the fact that the woman in the poem is confined to a life in which she is never truly happy; her life's purpose is to please her husband, and this leaves her in a deserted state of mind.

The delivery of the poem, gives confirmation that the narrator is meant to appear lonely. There is a very disconcerting tone about this poem. Tone is defined in Webster's College Dictionary as "the style or manner of expression in speaking or writing".

The language of the poem is intended to be colloquial, however, there is a deeper connotation behind the "simple" style. Gallagher only uses uncomplicated words. This is to affirm her status as a soft-witted, unsophisticated woman. Both the words and style of writing reflect this theory. The sentences are choppy. There is not a true flow within the poem. These two aspects suggest that the woman is too unimportant as a person and as a writer to care about the delivery of her poetry.

Although the woman comports herself in the style she has been taught, her inner-self is crying inside. The first line of the poem, which is also the title, is the first indication that the narrator is not pleased in her life. One who enjoys chores, would not mention the end of a task with such a negative connotation, unless she is honestly displeased...