Story-a-Day May. Day 6! And enchanted trees.

woods

I have only myself to blame for the many writing projects I’m working on. I feel scattered, but I also can’t bring myself to let go of any of them. Actually, a stack of projects await. As soon as I finish one, there is always another. But I love that too. Better too many ideas than too few.

But anyway, none of that matters. What matters is what gets done. So, onward.

And for today’s Story-a-Day…not exactly a story.

Trees possess no magic power.

Except without them, we’d live in an airless world, like the moon or Mars.

Ents walk Middle Earth. Lucy stumbles through a wardrobe into the woods of Narnia. Hansel and Gretel almost meet their end in a house in the woods, and Baba Yaga waits in a dark forest as well. Oberon and the Faerie Queen are found in enchanted woods. And whether in Oz or at Hogwarts, the forests are the most dangerous places. Although Robin Hood finds safe haven in Sherwood Forest and the Totoro children find nothing but magic in the woods around their home.

The woods around Lake Belle aren’t meant for Hood’s Merry Men or the Lost Boys of Neverland. They are fairy tale woods, indeed. Old trees and shadowy clearings. Florida woods bear little similarity to the Grimm stories of Europe. A hint of swamp edges around them. Moss hangs from the trees and strange insects skitter over the leaves. A princess wouldn’t wish to lose herself in a Florida forest unless she wore good, snake-bite proof boots and a carried a sturdy, five-pronged gig.

Early adventurers believed the Florida trails hid the Fountain of Youth. Perhaps, they do, but the earth there doesn’t give up its secrets. In fact, the Florida earth keeps secrets better than most places, as many a blaggard and a few witches can attest.

The town of Lake Belle grew up near the hear of the forest, and no matter how most townspeople avoid wandering off paths into the shadows of the trees, the shadows touch them nonetheless. Do the trees give the nightmares to the people or the people give their nightmares to the trees? No one is sure.

But perhaps you shouldn’t stay there too long.

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