The Lost Child
This is the tragic tale of
Irene and Shirley Shug, twin girls, who were born
59 years ago on, March 10th, 1952.
The day they were born in,
Pumpkin Center, South Dakota, their mom had just
finished milking the family cow when she felt
dizzy and suddenly damp (the mom, not the cow).
The expectant woman knew the
moment was now and she, instinctively,
hollered for her husband (Lyle) who immediately
began boiling sheets and drinking corn liquor.
A passing chiropodist
delivered the girls and the twins arrived safely
with no thanks to Lyle. However, Mrs. Shug did
have clean sheets on her bed.
A few years passed and the
girls became the focal point of their family life.
In addition, all was well and blissful until one
fateful day Shirley wandered into the hills by
herself and never seen again. At first, the
family thought she was only playing hide-and-seek;
however, after a few months they gave up on that
disappearance a veil of darkness fell over the
family. Lyle began drinking more heavily and
talking to his cattle in tongues. Meanwhile, Mrs.
Shug sat in front of her dresser mirror for hours
at a time listening to Puccinis La
Boehme while plucking hairs from her scalp
and eyebrows. Of course, the results from these
sessions were not flattering and did little to
improve her farm girl features. Further, Irene,
Shirleys twin sister, began staying in her
room for days eating corn nuts while writing
Haiku poetry about sheep.
As travelers would pass by
their farm, the parents called to them relating
their story of the missing child hoping to find
the answer to the disappearance. Years went by
and no one could shed any light on her vanishing.
Luckily, one time, a dark haired stranger
responded to their call. He stated that he had
heard tales of a young woman found in the Black
Hills of Dakota by a Gypsy band of gold digging
Seemingly, according to the
stranger, the attorneys had raised the young
woman as a paralegal, filed suit against her, and
then settled out of court in Duluth. Unhappily,
Shirley was never found and some say she remains
locked inside one of the lawyers briefs.
Finding no relief in the
strangers answer and after years of worry
and grief, the remaining Shugs abandoned
their troubled farm life and joined a traveling
circus headed for the Ukraine. They settled in a
small village near Kiev during the off-season
selling blankets and charms to the local tourists.
Further, they never again spoke of their lost
child whats her name.