General

After the never ending lights of the city, Tyler underestimated the utter blackness of nighttime in the woods. In his mind the trees would be black trunks against a bluish charcoal sky, the path would become deepest brown and the moonlight would bleach the stones within it. Hadn't every painting of woods at night been like that? Even if there was a moon tonight its silvery rays would not penetrate the dense canopy above. He was in too far in to turn back, the twilight he had mistaken for night had passed rapidly. It could be no blacker in a coffin, six feet under and piled with dirt. He began to breathe the cool air more rapidly. The darkness pressed in on him from all sides and his body screamed for him to run. He sank to his bottom on the damp earth of late spring and settled in to wait for dawn. All the while he listened for the bears and the wolves...

By daisy, May 7, 2015.
General

Stepping into the forest robbed you of one sense and heightened the others. It was disorientating to be almost blinded but given the ears of a wolf. Even the soft susurration of the branches felt heavy in the ears. The sense of smell was sensitized, the loam in the earth and the decomposing leaves made the atmosphere close and thick. The blackness nurtured a sense of claustrophobia inside you even though the woodland stretched unbroken for miles. The narrow path, which was made uneven by the knotted roots that crossed it, branched at intervals. There was no map to follow, but even if there was the perpetual dark would prevent you from using it. Only the songs of the elders would take you through. That's why the children sang them every night before bed and then again after breakfast. They were the only way to navigate.

By randolf, October 22, 2014.
General

I wake like I'm hooked up the mains. No sleepiness, no slow warming up. Within seconds of realizing I was unconscious I am on my feet, eyes wide, dreams not just forgotten but erased. I am drinking in the feedback of all my senses. Aside from my own noisy breath there is nothing to be heard and the woods are simply too dark to see much at all. Black trunks against an almost black backdrop doesn't make for much too see and my imagination begins to supply horrors to fill the void. After a minute or two the sound of running water permeates the inky blanket. I am near a brook. A brook would hide my scent, cover my tracks. I want to run, but it is with faltering steps and raised hands I move on, like a sick game of "blind man's bluff." I want to silence my feet, but all I do is step on twigs and kick stones.

By daisy, December 5, 2014.
General

The bare branches spiked into the sky - no sign of life to be found anywhere. It was so dark you were barely able to see where you were going. There were only small sounds of rustling bushes and the howl of the wind. You didn't know what laid in the dark forest, all you knew was that it wasn't going to be a peaceful journey.

By June Stone, December 4, 2014.
General

The hills that lie friendly in the day - like the pillows of the land - are darkly ominous by night. The paths that were illuminated just hours before become lost in a blackness that even moonlight cannot help. The trees that are magnificent in sunshine tower over James as he steps across the borderline between the seen and unseen. Choosing not to go in is no choice at all, but aren't all quests like that? He steels himself to keep moving, his hair on end as if the forest was on the enemy side. The air is several degrees cooler and soon he begins to shiver. On his frequent stops, James listens for signs of life around him, but there come none. Back in his home such a silence would be tranquil, but out here it is more like the quiet of the graveyard.

By daisy, February 7, 2015.
General

While my friends and I were going to a party deep into a dark wood, we could hear the cold breeze screaming in our ears. We saw the leaves and trees dancing side to side and smelled the fresh air that passed our way. It was so dark that light from our torches died only inches from the faltering flame.

By karissa, January 3, 2015.
General

I can't imagine being in these woods a few hundred years ago, all that's between you and complete blackness being a burning torch - a stick and rag. No wonder they feared the dark so much, isn't your imagination always so much worse when you can't see? I guess they knew how long those torches would last but I like my heavy flashlight with a fully recharged battery. I like pressing a button and feeling that reassuring clunk under my thumb as the beam powers into the night. Light is still light, but give me a solid pure beam to cut right through the darkness into the trees beyond, not just my toes, and I'm a happier girl.

By daisy, March 3, 2015.
General

I was pulled blindly in to the dark forest by her. The canopy let no light filter through, there was no sound. As I walked under the dark tresses of the trees my feet caressed the velvet flesh of the forest ground. I loved her and they all laughed. She breathed. No one believed me. They could not hear her voice when she sang, they could not see her beauty. They did not understand. They could never learn to love her as I did. She had many children, although they were not mine I loved them as if they were. Darkness engulfed, all that lighted my way was the will to lay with her. I sat under her heart. The arteries that pumped life blood in to her and her children now pulsed through me as I lay just below her bosom. All I asked was for her take me, to love as I loved her. It never mattered if she could speak to me. They said I was demented it, that it could never be, she was the darkness and people belonged in the light. Why did we fear it? Were the dark coils of the woods so foreboding?

By chalcanthite, May 25, 2015.
General

Todd could feel the darkness drawing closer to him and pressing down, suffocating him slowly as he stepped carefully through the thick maze of woodland. The densely packed trees loomed high above, but remained still despite the icy breeze that continued to flow around him. The silvery moonlight was slowed to a trickle by the full branches, and Todd had to squint, only to see a path of gloom and uncertainty ahead.

By fnic97, June 1, 2015.
General

The forest was dark and foreboding, but there was peace in its sullen ambiance. I wonder how Eric ever came to find the place. My eyes flickered over the thick, dark trunks of the trees that rose steadily into the sky, its branches interlocking with its neighbors like giant’s arms linked together protecting their home. The trees were densely packed together, leaving just enough space to allow someone to maneuver through. I pressed my palm against its rough bark, and breathed in the scent of the forest. The musty scent of leaves after rainfall, the warm soil packed against the earth by scurrying animals, the scent of things in different stages of blooming and growth. The smell of life. The forest was teeming with it.

By Bianca Braswell, May 28, 2015.
General

That night, as they scampered through the slender trees, stumbling over roots, cool spring ground underfoot, charcoal clouds chased them from above.

By pam3la, October 25, 2016.