December 23


A short story… Into the dark woods…

By IsayaBelle

December 23, 2022

big leap, Fiction, lifestory, short story

Because I'm never too old (and so are you!)  to begin something new, I decided to start writing fiction, as you might know... So here is my first attempt at a very short story, based on real life events. It's also very "seasonal" ... and aims to remind everyone about the importance of connecting with nature... and its cycles! It's called Into the Dark Woods and opens with a poem...

Selene shining above you,
Persephone hiding in the shadows,
Enchanted forest around you,
Low and High, White and Black,
Lament no more, witch, and cast your spells.

October 31st, 1991, Samhain, Swithland Woods, UK

Night time. I am walking in the darkness with my friend Alix. She’s wearing a witchy black cape and holding a lantern containing a candle.
We are searching for the Samhain circle where Alix has been invited.
I am feeling so alive, the woods themselves feel alive and populated with animals and other people celebrating Samhain in circles. Their guitars, songs and didgeridoos can be heard in the distance.
We are lost indeed. No sense of fear though, just an extraordinary feeling of aliveness.
At some point I fall on my knees and my hands touch the mulch of dying leaves and mud. It feels so cold and damp, and yet so sensual. I smell and feel the magic of the entire forest on my hands.
The candle is long gone in the lantern and and we are in complete darkness.
Or so you could believe.
The stars and a timid moon are still shining above us and provide just enough light for us to see the forest paths.
It lasts one minute, one hour, one year…
It’s a magic moment in time where my body, my heart, my Soul, my friend, the woods, the other people we hear in the distance or come to encounter … Everything and everyone is part of the magic of this instant, of the magic of feeling alert and aware, vibrant and buzzing with life.
The distant music, the low voice incantations, the cold and nipping air, the smoke from various smudging devices that linger in the air, the dried mud still on my hands, the cold, the smell of the moist earth, wherever we wander we feel the uniqueness and magic of this night… I feel like I am part of the forest, belonging to the woods, like we are some kind of entity.
Soon enough we find who we were looking for. Arriving close to the bonfire lit circle with candles all around, in a boisterous circle of pagans singing and celebrating together, we are greeted with joyous hellos. The woods now feel warm and welcoming.
We are offered some mead and bread and it awakens yet another type of magic, an even stronger feeling of being alive.

The caped woman and her companion are walking on my grounds.
The night has been shattered tonight by human lights, noises and smells. They come in the woods, they bring music and light and the stillness is disrupted, the darkness is broken.
In the night, in the woods, I am Queen.
The two women, with their lantern and laughter, stumbling and rambling loudly, create a cacophony, a clamorous disorder that troubles the forest. And my hunt.
There is no peace to be had tonight, and no food to be caught.
All mice, hedgehogs and moles and any small animals are hiding, for fear of the loud humans.
It happens every now and again, every so often, that humans invade the woods.
I can understand their desire to reconnect, to be one with the forest.
I know how lost they are since they they decided to live glued to one another in these gray boxes they call houses, far from the trees and the grass, miles away form foxes or birds or bats or raccoons.
I am aware of their loneliness.
And yet, these woods are my home still and my hunting grounds.
Humans are mere guests, they don’t feel the forest like we do, they don’t understand it in their bones. They have been gone too long.
So I allow them. In my wisdom and generosity, I let them come and restore their connection to the woods, to me and to all other animals.
I allow them to strengthen their relationship with the land.
Still I will protest by screaming and reminding them with my loud hoots who remains Queen of the woods at night.

So much for today ...
I would be so happy to hear from you about all that.
Thank you in advance for your comment.
Until then I send you love, light and gratitude.

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