The woods are lovely, dark and deep.

After being out here in Raleigh, NC and running around Lake Johnson whose greenway trail goes right through the surrounding woods I’ve decided that individuals who have grown up on the Great Plains have no concept that woods can be “dark and deep”.

On the plains the highest tree is, at most 10 feet tall and its nearest neighbor is a good 15 feet away. There’s no dense woods, no blocking of the sun, so thus it’s impossible to get lost among them and thus there’s nothing even remotely menacing about them. This explains why growing up I could never grok stories of people getting lost in the woods or really comprehend what’s so scary about a mystery set in the woods. Even down in the Texas hill country the trees are neither overly tall or particularly dense. After being here and seeing the amazingly tall trees so tightly packed together I have a much better appreciation for both their beauty and their potential to sow confusion for an unprepared soul.

Given this, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the ghost stories told at camps held on the plains are significantly different and possibly less menacing than those held in the woods of North Carolina.

And because you know you want to go read it now that it’s stuck in your head, here’s a link to the Robert Frost poem: Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening.

Published by


I'm a gay geek living in Seattle, WA.

2 thoughts on “The woods are lovely, dark and deep.”

    1. What my lovely wife generously neglects to mention is that, at least near our house, the dark, deep woods are gorgeous for strolling only *if* you can block out the inescapable rumble of the Garden State Parkway. Though I hear tell of more remote places in extreme South and Northwest Jersey, we have yet to explore them. We’ve seen truly beautiful rural areas of NY and ME–oceans of leaves in colors that don’t exist in nature in Texas!–but they’re a bit harder to come by here. From suburban New York, to suburban Philly, to suburban Wilmington, New Jersey is all…suburban. Anywhere there’s even a patch of undeveloped land they wedge in a theme park or a horse track or an indoor ski slope. :)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s