The Secret At Shadow Ranch

Content Warning, childhood sexual abuse

Architectural Note: This poem is after Nancy Drew, Book Number 5, The Secret At Shadow Ranch, and also my relationship, as a survivor of childhood sexual abuse to the book Lolita. I always related to Lolita as a survivor and saw her suffering in between the lines of a narrative constructed by a criminal. If my abuser wrote a story about me, it would probably redact my suffering and humanity similarly. So it’s easy for me to identify with the victim of this story because I’m used to being similarly silenced in my life.

The Secret At Shadow Ranch

You learn the wrong things before you can read.

Men speak in tongues and you know what they mean.

Discovered dirt that they will overseed

blossoms a deviant bloom only a tween.

Cynical sprouts erupt from thin skin.

Substitute books for naive little friends.

Before you speak your truth, read it written 

in novel girlhood some ban, recommend. 

Just like your life, her story’s in between lines

a criminal utters and undermines.

To Duk Duk Ranch from suburban confines,

shadows of predators are easy to find

inside of her pages, beside you in bed.

Yours, too, was a suffering mostly unsaid.