Published on Academy of American Poets (


Its perpendicular
tilted, falling forward,
this oblique stroke
between lines of verse
or fractions’ numbers
or month/day/year
separates & connects
parts of some whole:
its diagonal can also
offer us alternatives
like his/her, and/or,
a skinny twig partway
between limb & ground,
like me not quite vertical
or horizontal, a slash
leaning into stiff wind.


Copyright © 2017 Michael McFee. Used with permission of the author. This poem originally appeared in The Southern Review, Spring 2017.


Michael McFee

Michael McFee is the author of numerous poetry collections, including We Were Once Here (Carnegie Mellon University Press, 2017). He lives in North Carolina.

Date Published: 2017-07-27

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