Welcome to The Vortex

Hold my hand;
plunge in
to the vortex
and let’s just turn and turn and turn and turn
and make it all black.

Never let go
of words;
of our hands so joined in this
light sucking tangerined black.
close your eyes.
and you will see.
I see.
golden firefly fairies
forming You, Me
and all the words in between.

All the words that got scattered into the gyre like tiny red seeds before they were remembered,
killing Time
stuck on the ceiling fan.
it turns too.
right to the black dot in the centre.
we’re in it.

And What Do You Say to That: A response to Carlos


This is just to say
The plums
in the ice box
that you ate

and which
you found
so delicious
and so sweet

were left
for you to enjoy
and devour.


Note to the reader:

This particular poem is in response to William Carlos Williams’s quite famous poem “This is just to say”. And it can be found here: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/just-say


Washed off

Everyone has that one place that they hold dear to heart. The place where they are confident on getting around even if they were to be rendered blind. And then an old photograph pops up on Facebook, and suddenly you are confused because you can’t peg where the photograph was taken. You feel like you are standing in the beach, too close to where the sea and land make love, and the earth is constantly washed off from beneath your feet. And you realize that the place that is so dear to your heart is slowly being washed away, without you even being aware of it.

The Pulse

It is pulsing.




Gaining momentum.

Too thick to let go.

And so it throbs.

A reminder of an incessant knocking

At the bottom of your spine

That won’t back off.

(You can squeeze your eyes shut until you  see stars on the ceiling of your eyelids)

But, still there.

And you live with it.

Your cross to bear.

See? There is so, so much in a name.

It is all the difference.

It is the difference between that which we call a back ache,

And the pulsing.

Mind numbing, abacinating, scamperring

Effing pulse.

Counting and Discounting

Let me discount the ways,

Memory by memory, little by little –

Let me go back

To the before the beginning of all the counting.

I discount the way

Men go in search of their lost coins.

I discount to stitch my lost pieces into a quilt for when the counting gets tough.

Let me discount so that I can start counting again.


I see the women of my generation violated by madness;

Objectified, groped, raped.

Asking for it because their cleavage was visible;

Asking for it because they covered too much;

Asking for it because they wore red lipstick and eyeliner;

Asking for it simply because of the vagina they seem to possess –

Envying the mighty Penis gods.

They dared smoke and drink. They dared call themselves huMAN.

Being put into their place – beneath his feet;

At his mercy – smiling, cooing, blowing him kisses.

Denied justice upon the failure of character test.

Taught by their own mothers to suck up to the will, and  fancy of their husband

Taught to never speak out –

When daddy hurt them;

When the Neighbour uncle pinched them;

When a leech was too drunk to keep it in.

Muffled, when trying to speak up

“Ah, Carl, while you are not safe, I am not safe.”

  • The opening line is a rip off from Allen Ginsberg’s opening line of his Howl: “I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,”
  • The ending line is a direct quote from Howl.

The Question is: Who Cares?!

Ashley Barboza

Life, Love.


media | politics | dissent

the Antimuseum in Paris (and beyond)

antimuseum photo blog by Yann Gourvennec

This, that and everything

Contains words like humour, quirky and offbeat.


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