As darkness settles, the air grows cool and crisp, promising rain later to those who can feel it in their bones and guaranteeing a cold night for those who can’t. The smell of the air becomes almost a living thing, damp and thick; the smells are of the ponds, of the moist greenery, faint smoke coming from far off, and lastly, the smell of woods in the night. It all smells musty, in a cold sort of way, as if the whole outside world has become the den in an old house.
The woods in the night are magical. Bare though they are of leaves, they brim with a foreign power, a promise of mystery, adventure and danger that can be found in their depths. The branches of the trees seem to be like a hundred arms reaching out towards the sky, some leaning down and beckoning to the watcher to come in, to look closer.
The prospect of being lost in those woods is both frightening and enchanting. There is a feeling that anything could happen amongst the tree trunks, between the wild roots, inside knotholes. The onlooker can easily be hypnotized, drawn into the New England woodlands as if by invisible Fae. With the right sort of courage, perhaps those wild creatures could be discovered.
There is a fascination that people seem to have with creatures of the night. Look at the amount of novels, movies and TV shows dedicated to vampires and werewolves – the latest Twilight craze being only the most recent and romanticized version of these creatures.
I’ve never been one to really believe in things like this – monsters, ghosts, things that go bump in the night. I’d love it if they could be real, only because having creatures like that around seems to make life very much more interesting, but I’ve always been a “prove it” sort of person. Such is my attitude towards religion as well, but that’s for another post, sometime in the future when I have the nerves for it.
Back to the adoration, or at least fixation, that so many of us seem to have with vampires and werewolves – I wonder where it stems from? Yes, things of danger are always interesting, especially when you’re snug in your bed reading or in a padded chair at a movie theater. But then monsters and hags and ghouls should be dealt with just as often – and yet they’re not. We seem to love the idea of a tortured soul, someone who is human some of the time or still resembles a human in day to day life. Something about the moral questions that arise from a lifestyle that involved killing and maiming seems to be intriguing, something we’d like to delve into – as long as it’s not our own problems of course.
Ah, the musings that surface after watching “Buffy, the Vampire Slayer” at midnight…