Oldfield Birch

It is said there is an old field, where heavy mist shrouds everything in a thick, hazy gloom. Except, of course, for the birch.

The birch is old and, they say, the birch is mean.

Its wiry branches will whip in the wind and, if you get too close, will give you a good thrashing harsh enough to draw blood.

It is said that blood had long ago awakened the tree and that, having gotten a taste of it, the tree now hungers for more. They say the birch learned to call the wind, using it to whip its branches into a frenzy that will then flay those unsuspecting who passed by.

It is said the tree turned black in its core, and that no one ever dares to go near itβ€”not even the mist. They say to be careful when out in the old field, and to run whenever the wind starts to stir.


  1. Now that’s a creepy one. A vampire birch *shivers*
    Tasha’s Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

    • Sara C. Snider

      Makes wandering around in the woods at night a bad idea on a whole new level. πŸ˜‰

  2. Gloomy! Evil trees are a powerful image, because we usually associate life with trees, not death…

    @TarkabarkaHolgy from
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    MopDog – 26 Ways to Die in Medieval Hungary

  3. That is dark and visceral, I like it πŸ™‚ I was getting the creeps during the warning at the end there.
    Sophie’s Thoughts & Fumbles
    Wittegen Press

  4. Eish! as we say here in South Africa .. or ish and more ish. I wonder if we have birches here …I’m not sure I want to know. Properly scared thank you.

    • Sara C. Snider

      Thanks Susan, and I like the South African-ism. Good stuff. πŸ˜€

  5. Favorite part; “not even the mist.” I like the way everything has a character!

  6. Wow. I totally was watching poltergeist in my head when reading this. That movie still scares the crud out of me.

    Do you know the legend of the sakura? How warriors blood turned them pink when they were buried under the threes.

    • Sara C. Snider

      I don’t know that legend, but it sounds fantastically creepy. Thanks Djinnia. πŸ™‚

  7. Sounds a lot like the Whomping Willow in Harry Potter. I’ll be sure to stay clear on windy days. πŸ™‚

  8. Ah, very creepy! Well done!

  9. Hi Sara – you’ve now put me off my Birch that I used to climb and be whipped around as the wind whistled round … I’ll look at birches more closely in future .. lovely telling of the story to make me weary and wary! … cheers Hilary

    • Sara C. Snider

      I’m a big fan of birch trees, don’t let one creepy one put you off. πŸ˜‰ Thanks for stopping by and reading, Hilary!

  10. And I thought I loved all trees.

    So imaginative, Sara, and beautifully told.

    I’ll have to go back and read your earlier stories in this A-Z series. Are you going to publish them in a little book?


    • Sara C. Snider

      Thank you, Samantha! And yes, I’m thinking I probably will bundle these up into a little ebook. πŸ™‚

  11. Loved this story. I can totally visualise it.
    Hell, I can even feel it!!!

  12. Hello Sara- remembering how awesome your A-To-Z was last year, I thought I’d mosey on over to see what it was like this time. It is, I observe, just as awesome! And creepy! Huzzah! I really liked this tiny, creepy, uneasy little piece.

    • Sara C. Snider

      Thanks, Melanie! I’ve been meaning to head on over to your blog… but yeah, I never seem able to visit as many as I’d like. I’m glad you stopped by, and I’m glad you like the story. πŸ™‚

  13. Lori Wing

    Great animism! In my head I could hear the voice of a Native American shaman. The brevity makes it all the more portentous. Love it!

    • Sara C. Snider

      Thanks, Lori! I love that you heard a shaman-y voice in your head. Awesome. πŸ˜€

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