Tuesday, February 02, 2010


ArLiJo.com Featuring Poetry by Catee Baugh & Essay by Holly Berardi

ArLiJo.com is currently featuring poetry by Catee Baugh, a native of Washington, DC, and an award-winning essay by Holly Berardi from suburban Maryland.


Touch is a pleasure
Making me yelp-
After pushing all my caustic emotions
Up to the pores of my skin and
Watching them leak out,
I realize now I am a burn victim
And to touch me is to touch
The skin of an atomic survivor.

But pain is both poison and antidote,
A vaccine against the ordinary.
So for you,
I will expose myself
And all my defenses and pretensions,
Though not pretending
Their removal is easy or safe.
They are duct-tape band-aids
Tearing away the hair
And meager portions of singed skin
When I yank them off
To the tune of my
Screaming laughter
So that you might see thin ribbons
Of muscle and vein under my superficial layers
While I laugh at the infection seeping in.

Yes, there is something
Masochistic in my sullen art.
And I remember all those muttered words
From the mouths of teachers about
“Narrator as imagined construct in poem.”
But I would rather be
Slit open and displayed
On iron tables in museum hallways
With my very intestines hanging off,
Dripping onto the feet of passerby,
And they pulling off my skin like burnt offerings
Than be a masked and painted actor on a stage,
Only there to forget my made-up lines.

Copyright © 2010 by Catee Baugh.

To read more poems click on ArLiJo.com

To read Holly Berardi's essay A Deeper Look into Negative Campaigning, click on the link below:

A Deeper Look into Negative Campaigning

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