Thursday, December 16, 2010

Into the Woods

“Don’t go into the woods.” That’s what all the stories say. The woods are dark, the woods are dangerous, the woods are evil. Stay away from that maze where the wolves hide; remain in the safe cradle of civilization. That’s always the lesson the protagonist is told at the start of the story.
What horribly boring stories those would be, if the protagonist always listened.

Slender Man lives amongst trees. Slender Man is stronger amongst trees. Slender Man is a tree. New stories, but repeating the old lesson. Stay away from the woods.

Yet like the protagonists of the old tales, I ignored that advice. My feet pressed down on the rotting leaves and my hands moved aside thorn covered branches as I journeyed through this forbidden place. It may sound stupid, suicidal, to anyone reading. But these woods were my woods. I had grown up around these trees; I had seen them change, seen them die, and the new be born. The forest surrounding my childhood had never been a place of terror, but rather a place of adventure. When I make the statement that no one else knows these woods like I do, it is not a brag, but a truth. Every trail through them, even the ones found on no map, have been explored by me. I have each inch of the place carved into my memory, a carving made by hundreds of expeditions. This place was like a second home to me; I have just as much right to the land as Slender Man, if not more. If I had to choose a place to confront him, this would be it.

I did not see Slender Man during my walk through that place. Or perhaps I did. Was that shape in the distance an arm, or just another branch which had grown while I was away at school? Was that white gleam his face, or just the light of the sun reflecting off limestone? Never did I get a clear sighting, only hidden shadows and distant noises. I could still feel the familiarity and warmth which I had associated with this forest, but there was another feeling beneath it, a feeling cold, distant, and alien. It pulled on the back of my mind, always just a tiny feeling, but always there, echoing across every step I took.

I’ve put some pictures of my trip at the bottom of this post. Go ahead and look if you wish, though none contain the gentleman you’re looking for.


  1. The woods are really beautiful. Nice pictures!

  2. reminds me of the woods back where I grew up at.

  3. Trees. Branches. Leaves. Ironic, in a way.