Two Poems

Charnell Peters



I learned from Shayla’s older sister
that food sweetens on the tongue
when (yes those strawberries tasted
like a sugar spill of blood and seeds)
you happen to get full with a new baby
girl my body set up house for her I knew
because I count my days like I count
money and time careful and easy like
I didn’t get I’m fifteen first breakup fat
when you know sure fuck it was my fault
anyway I was fat like this is a girl’s fault
she’s sucking all my food down her throat
from the inside girls like to wreck you up
because they keep you happier in life 
they take your rib bones in their hands
and kick you up like they want you dead
and I never wanted any type of pain
like I wanted this six months girl out of me
so I said doctor my breasts feel like needles
are jumping all up in them and I saved
all my period money to buy onesies
and diapers for her and I said doctor
just check and see if she has any hair
because nobody likes a bald baby girl
I said smear gel on my stretched tummy
and show me if she has my skin or his
and she sure smeared and said I can’t see
nothing there’s no baby skin to find



Lick, Lick


if you lick a white girl doll
every morning from her string hair
to the chewed points of her feet
and hold your breath till you turn
a bit purple gray but not red
you can hear all her peach plastic
scratch down through your throat
slide into your brown insides
and fizz up like a shaken soda
and if you slice away your tongue
little by little with bobbin scissors
touching at the bleeding with
a neat double-folded Kleenex
and if you take bobbin scissors
to your lips and pull away slow
you will vomit up partially-digested
chunks of white pile-on mush
looking a bit like cottage cheese
but mostly a melted white girl doll






















 About the Writer
Split Lip Magazine

Charnell Peters’ work has appeared or is forthcoming in Apogee, Public Pool, Relief Journal, Puerto Del Sol's Black Voices Series, Fiction Southeast, and Cleaver Magazine, among other places. She is pursuing an MA

in Media and Communication at Bowling Green State University, and she loves brave, honest stories.