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Are you looking for Wood this Christmas?

Few people, in the UK, rely on wood for heating, but some people are still keen on open fires, where planning rules allow, to add to the ambience of their home, particularly at Christmas time. This poem was used as an aid to housewives (and husbands) as to which particular types of wood made for good burning. There are two versions, one from my mother and one from my grandmother.

 

Beechwood fires are bright and clear
If the logs are kept a year
Chestnut only good they say
If for long it's stored away
Make a fire of elder tree
Death within your house will be
But ash new or ash old
Is fit for a Queen with a crown of gold

Birch and Fir logs burn too fast
Blaze up bright and do not last
It is by the Cornish said
Hawthorn bakes the sweetest bread
Elm wood burns like churchyard mould
Even the very flames are cold
But ash green or ash brown
Is fit for a Queen with a golden crown

Poplar gives a bitter smoke
Fills your eyes and makes you choke
Apple wood will scent your room
With an incense-like perfume
Oaken logs, if dry and old
Keep away the winters cold
But ash wet or ash dry
A king shall warm his slippers by

2nd version

Beechwood fires burn  bright and clear
If the logs are kept a year
Store your beech for Christmas time
With new holly laid beside
Chestnuts only good they say
If for years tis stored away
Birch and firewood burn too fast
Blaze too bright and do not last
Flames from larch will shoot up high
Dangerously the sparks will fly
But Ashwood green and Ashwood brown
Are fit for a Queen with a golden crown

Oaken logs, if dry and old
Keep away the winters cold
Poplar gives a bitter smoke
Fills your eyes and makes you choke
Elmwood burns like churchyard mould
Even the very flames burn cold
Hawthorn bakes the sweetest bread
So it is in Ireland said
Applewood will scent the room
Pears wood smells like a flower in bloom
But Ashwood wet and Ashwood dry
A King may warm his slippers by.

 

 

Logs to Burn, Logs to burn, Logs to burn,
Logs to save the coal a turn,
Here's a word to make you wise,
When you hear the woodman's cries.

Never heed his usual tale,
That he has good logs for sale,
But read these lines and really learn,
The proper kind of logs to burn.

Oak logs will warm you well,
If they're old and dry.
Larch logs of pine will smell,
But the sparks will fly.

Beech logs for Christmas time,
Yew logs heat well.
"Scotch" logs it is a crime,
For anyone to sell.

Birch logs will burn too fast,
Chestnut scarce at all.
Hawthorn logs are good to last,
If you cut them in the fall.

Holly logs will burn like wax,
You should burn them green,
Elm logs like smoldering flax,
No flame to be seen.

Pear logs and apple logs,
They will scent your room,
Cherry logs across the dogs,
Smell like flowers in bloom

But ash logs, all smooth and gray,
Burn them green or old;
Buy up all that come your way,
They're worth their weight in gold.

The Way Through the Woods.


They shut the road through the woods
Seventy years ago.
Weather and rain have undone it again,
And now you would never know
There was once a road through the woods
Before they planted the trees.
It is underneath the coppice and heath,
And the thin anemones.
Only the keeper sees
That, where the ring-dove broods,
And the badgers roll at ease,
There was once a road through the woods.

Yet, if you enter the woods
Of a summer evening late,
When the night-air cools on the trout-ringed pools
Where the otter whistles his mate.
(They fear not men in the woods,
Because they see so few)
You will hear the beat of a horse's feet,
And the swish of a skirt in the dew,
Steadily cantering through
The misty solitudes,
As though they perfectly knew
The old lost road through the woods. . . .
But there is no road through the woods.
- Rudyard Kipling
         
         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wild Animals that may live in British Christmas Tree Plantations

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Wednesday, October 14, 2020 1:09 PM