Matador Review

A Quarterly Missive of Alternative Concern

C.T. Salazar


The barn doesn't love you, though over and over you enter

its wide mouth like Jonah passing back and forth through the fish.

Even with four horses and a loft full of crows, the barn is of no mind.

The smoke above the barn is just                   the sky learning

to say barn. Say it. Say the flame inside is just the barn pretending

to be a man. The next time you put faith in anything remember when

the wind blows, the barn sings                       until it runs out of breath.

"Slaughter and Ritual Knife"

The slaughter slides into the knife
           because it doesn't have anything else
to lean on.

                       The difference between sacrifice
and soldier is one
           gets to learn a new language—

one has a language for slaughter and it sounds

like sacrifice.
           Your coat was too soft
for us.
           I learned to look into the wound:
           how the window to holiness

tears itself wider and we reach
                       saying here, take            our hooves.

C.T. Salazar is the editor-in-chief of Dirty Paws Poetry Review. He's the 2017 AWP Intro Journals poetry winner. His poetry appears or is forthcoming in The Tampa Review, The Harpoon Review, FLARE: the Flagler Review, The Broke Bohemian, and elsewhere. He's an MFA candidate and children's librarian.