Some people say that winter left the woods dead and abandoned, but they deny the truth. Once, this bench was visited often as people strolled through the small stretch of trees on Saturday evenings, but now it is only visited by the ghosts of the past.
It was Halloween night when it happened. A few years back, a dead body was found in a dry stream bed on the scariest day of the year. Foul play wasn’t suspected, but it left the woods forever silent and eerie.
The trees are dead and bent, and erosion has taken it’s fair course. The desolated woods seem every bit of a horror movie.
Which is why I had to check it out.
It had started out as a picnic in the park next door. I had two friends with me. One of them suggested we explored the haunted woods and of course my other friend (also know as The Inky Teapot) jumped at the idea.
When we first entered, a feeling of fear filled my lungs. Someone had died here- I could almost feel the darkness around me. We all wondered at the back of our minds if we would find something horrifying like that Halloween night all those years ago.
We continued on, exploring the creepy woods. No birds sang, no bugs buzzed.
It was completely silent.
Then we saw the bench. It stood there cold and isolated, like it was a gravestone. None of us had the courage to sit on it.
Dead branches jutted into the ground and scratched our legs and arms. We stumbled through the trees, taking pictures and staying close to each other for safety.
But soon the quiet woods turned from eerie to mysterious. While we looked at the scenic trees we noticed something: it wasn’t just full of dead branches, it was full of life.
We reached a creek in the woods where a bent tree with a precarious ladder stood firmly planted in the ground. One of my friends decided to climb it, despite my paranoid objections. She carefully climbed up the ladder and as she reached a thick branch, she exclaimed that it was hollow. Suddenly, an owl flew out of the tree branch and perched on top of a different tree. The owl was beautiful.
It was then when I started to realize what I was doing. I was so sure that the clearing was haunted and scary that I imagined it that way. I needed to see it for how it was.
My eyes were opened. Each tree had it’s own story to tell. Every trail had memories. It was beautiful.
Instead of fear, I felt inspiration and anticipation.
We kept treading through the woods. Although many of the trails were abandoned, they were so fun to explore. I couldn’t help myself wonder what secrets I could discover while walking through the perplex forest .
We came out of the clearing in awe. The beauty and power of the seemingly dead forest had blown us away. It made us want to explore more.
Now that I’ve discovered the truth of the woods, I no longer fear the haunted myths. The woods were so mysterious and mystifying that they left me with a motivated and inquiring spirit. As spring continues to come upon us, perhaps the trees will become green.
And I hope that one day, that lonely bench will be used again.