Poetry: Calvin Olsen


She sits alone, a small chapel
all to herself. Please do not enter
the sign reads, except for confession.
The paintings above her would swing
if someone could touch them.

There is a tree—a metal tree
with a symbolic number of branches,
I’m sure—curling up the wall
like smoke toward the light,
dissolving through the stained glass.
If only, she thinks,
if only it were that easy.



Il Duomo, Milan, Italy



CALVIN OLSEN’s poetry has been published in SWAMP, The Honey Land Review, Inscape, and the anthology Fire in the Pasture: 21st Century Mormon Poets. After completing his MFA at Boston University he received a 2011 Robert Pinsky Global Fellowship. He currently resides in Watertown, MA, where he works as a reader for Slate and a Portuguese translator.