291D: Inside a tree, a long dark staircase

A children’s book I read in the early 1970’s. a boy goes inside a tree and there is a long, long dark staircase inside it. He climbs it and I don’t remember what happened next. I think the illustrations were black ink sketches. Thanks!

4 thoughts on “291D: Inside a tree, a long dark staircase

  1. lenona

    A very long shot, since I’m not even sure what you said HAPPENS in the book (it’s been ages since I read it) but check out Folk Tales, here:
    It’s by Wilhelm Matthiessen, translated in 1968 – he died in 1965. I posted the original question myself, in 2000. So when I said “I knew the edition had to be from the last 40 years” I meant I knew it was written post-1960, from certain clues in the book.

  2. Stephanie Bates

    This could be Magic in the Park by Ruth Chew. The scene you described reminds me of a scene from Magic in the Park where the boy climbs up through a tree and finds he has turned into a pigeon.

  3. Gayle Thomas

    It could be The Wish-Tree by John Ciardi, published in 1962. A boy dreams about? finds? a wish-tree. There are stairs, and an inscription over a door about ?being good to your wish? He ends up with his wish–a dog.

    1. William Martin

      Gayle! Thank you so much, you solved a mystery we’ve been agonizing over for years! We found it on eBay, and our copy is on the way. My sister and I can’t thank you enough.


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