Sweet cherry isolated on white

by Chelsea M. Harris

She told you she was driving to the bridal store to shop for dresses with the girls she used to babysit before you were born since she knew she’d never see you all wrapped up in a marshmallow mess surrounded by floor-length mirrors, asking questions like How does my ass look? and Do you think he’ll love it?, your cheeks glowing in rose-colored blooms, eyes done up in sugar-coated sparkle, pupils wide, sipping down those strawberry cosmos, fifteen dollars a whack because you’re at a fancy place with silk curtains and shimmery walls dripping in white, dripping in the things you ask your daddy for because that’s a man’s job and why’s he even living if not to pay for you to marry one under a string of Jell-O lights, your twinkle toes strapped into nine-inch heels, a thread of crusted diamonds kissing your chest, and who’s to say you even love this guy with the charcoal mustache, with the beady smile, telling you one night when you’re twisting underneath him that he’s done a whole lot of fucking, a whole lot of banging pounding knocking nailing boinking shagging, telling you he’s dipped his wick, he’s done the nasty, he’s hit a home run so many times he lost count, that smile sharper than the knitting needle you used in the locker room bathroom stall, you running your trembling fingers over muddy inner thighs, thick cherry slime swallowing them, you didn’t think it would feel like this, I love Bobby and Fuck You are etched into the metal door in front of you and you can’t remember who Bobby is and if he fucked you, and this whole time there’s eyeballs bouncing between your legs like pinballs, itsy bitsy teeny weeny fingernails earlobes pinky toes nostrils creamed corn cuticles swimming through hoops of blood in the toilet bowl, everything smothered in red, girls parading in from the court with their sour sherbet skin, with their orange lemon raspberry lime lips, all of them glistening bright and brilliant, saying things like I wish my thighs were smaller, Are we going out tonight? Yeah I gave him a BJ, all of them peeling through basketball practice, through cafeteria slop acne scars high school parties bus rides popped cherries locker combinations English class all while you hover over a porcelain bowl ripping ruby froth from your loins, and you think they must be right when they call you a Slutbag whore because you’ve slept with Alex John David Mark Michael and Ricky, and you still can’t figure out which one of them made you skip Home Ec to empty out your insides, which one you banged on the football bus at an away game in your brother’s bedroom outside the memorial hospital when your mom was getting her tubes tied because she didn’t want another one of you, you waiting in the Toyota with your knees spread door to door, and who would ever know, who would say Hey you slutty little whore you Floozy tramp you Dick sucking skank you Easy bitch when you made it to your thirties, you wiping nugget slime off your forearms at the drive-thru window while mom’s out gawking at frosted gowns, thinking McChicken McDouble McFlurry McGangbang, men in their burnt red Chevys, women with their razzled lips, all of them saying Hurry up you fat twat, all of them saying You stupid cunt, You high school dropout give me my fucking Big Mac already, you in the bathtub touching yourself until your fingers drowned, you in the ice cream aisle at Walmart buying yourself two gallons of peppermint stick because it’s Christmas eve and you don’t have a boyfriend, a fiancé, a husband baby mother father brother sister, all you’ve got is this milk velvet gut spilling out nothing

Chelsea-HarrisChelsea M. Harris received the Follet Graduate Merit Award to attend Columbia College Chicago and pursue an M.F.A. from the Department of Creative Writing. Chelsea was named to Glimmer Train’s top 25 list for their Very Short Fiction Award and has had work published in Cigale Literary Magazine, Wonderlust Literary Zine, The Antarctican Zine, and on Thought Catalog. She currently resides in Chicago with her cat, Winston.


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