cornish forest fairies

Fairies in the Forest

Perhaps you did not know that every tree is the home of a fairy, but it is. Now when the wood fairies set out hundreds of years ago to choose their homes, some of them took a fancy to the trees in a beautiful large forest, and they settled themselves very happily in the huge beeches, the mighty oaks, and the -trunked ashes that stood so thickly together that the whole forest was dim and shady even in the middle of the brightest day.

But some of the others did not agree with these. "What is the use of the crowding together in this dismal, dark forest?" they asked, "It would be far more sensible as well as much pleasanter to live in the open, where we should get all the sunshine."

And so away they went, and established themselves in certain trees which stood alone in the fields near to the forest. For some time all went well; the forest fairies living near to each other, were very happy and very friendly, while the fairies in the lonely trees thought themselves still better off, because, as they said, they were in such nice open positions, and their homes were so quiet and the society so select.

But one night a terrible wind arose and a tempest broke over the whole country. Those trees which stood alone were blown down or struck by the lightning and rent from head to foot, but the dense forest resisted the fury of the storm, and though many branches strewed the ground next morning, none of the trees were blown down.

The foolish fairies who had chosen single trees were now nearly all homeless, and they came in a sad plight to beg shelter from the fairies of the forest. "We have learnt wisdom," they said, humbly, "but the lesson has cost us dear. We see now that union is strength."

From the St Austell Star newspaper, Feb 1912