#2 The smell of a wood burning fire

This is the town where I live 🙂

I go for a walk on a crisp winter’s morning.  The sky is clear, not a cloud to be seen.  The ground, the rooftops, the trees and plants are pure white and


in the early morning light. 

A wispy haze surrounds the town in cosy, snugly blanket.  The haze is a result of a row of chimneys, all puffing away, little bursts of fluffy white escaping their grasp every few seconds and the houses below them toasty and warm.

This is not where I live, just an example!

Then the scent hits me.  Not the smoke of a coal fire (I don’t like that smell – too chokey!), the smell of a wood-burning fire.  There’s nothing like it.  It overwhelms the senses and takes me into my dream world, reminding me of wonderful memories of the Berg.

The wood smell is always slightly different, depending on the wood used (I would imagine) but my favourite is that pine woodland smell.  This is the Drakensberg in the winter (ref to: https://drawingroomdays.wordpress.com/2012/04/25/my-favourite-sketches/ for more about that).  The Underberg is dominated by Pine and Fir trees, each with their own unique scents.  And when each of these type of logs are burned, the scents that fill the air always make me feel relaxed, at peace and at home.  The smell is fresh and clean, a new day filled with the promise of wonderful things to come.

I was always told there are certain logs you can burn and ones that are not so good for burning.  I found this poem (I don’t really know how useful it is, but apparently it’s rather old so don’t quote me on it 🙂 ) and thought I’d share it:


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.
logs will warm you well,
If they’re old and dry.

LARCH logs of pine wood 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 smouldering 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 grey,
burn them green or old;
Buy up all that come your way

They’re worth their weight in gold.

(credit to: http://www.wildeye.co.uk/trees/firewood.html for that 🙂 )

So I breathe in deeply (don’t tell me its bad for my lungs – I don’t care!), close my eyes and picture my favourite mountains.

Hmm, what a glorious day!

(And thanks to http://www.glittergraphicsite.com for their sparkle!)

Copyright  ©  130512 by Karen Payze


  1. Ted

    Great article, totally what I needed.

    • Happy to help 🙂


  1. Scents fire | Ugogaming

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