The sailing pine, the cedar proud and tall, The vine-prop elm, the poplar never dry, The builder oak, sole king of forests all, The aspen good for staves, the cypress funeral. The laurel, meed of mighty conquerors And poets sage, the fir that weepeth still, The willow worn of forlorn paramours, The ewe obedient to the benders will, The birch for shafts, the sallow for the mill, The myrrh sweet bleeding in the bitter wound, The warlike beech, the ash for nothing ill, The fruitful olive, and the platan round, The carver holme, the maple seldom inward sound.Edmund Spenser: 1590 The Faerie Queen, bk.1, canto1, stanzas 8-9. plantan=plane tree; holme=holly.
I'm all for bringing back the birch. But only between consenting adults.Vidal, Gore originally Eugene Luther Vidal,Jr: 1966 Interview on The Frost Programme.
I'd like to go by climbing a birch tree And climb black branches up a snow-white trunk Toward heaven, till the tree could bear no more, But dipped its top and set me down again. That would be good both going and coming back. One could do worse than be a swinger of birches.Robert Lee Frost: 1916 'Birches'.
Along with the theocratic right, two other hard right political movements pose a grave threat to democracy: regressive populism, typified by diverse groups ranging from members of the John Birch Society out to members of the patriot and armed militia movements; and White racial nationalism, promoted by Pat Buchanan and his shadow, David Duke of Louisiana.Chip Berlet 
We have strict statutes and most biting laws, The needful bits and curbs to headstrong steeds, Which for these fourteen years we have let sleep; Even like an o'ergrown lion in a cave, That goes not out to prey. Now, as fond fathers, Having bound up the threat'ning twigs of birch, Only to stick it in their children's sight For terror, not to use, in time the rod Becomes more mock'd than fear'd; so our decrees, Dead to infliction, to themselves are dead, And liberty plucks justice by the nose; The baby beats the nurse, and quite athwart Goes all decorum.Duke Vincentio, scene iii
On the way I stood a moment looking out across the marshes with tall cattails, a patch of water, more marsh, then the woods with a few birch trees shining white at the edge on beyond. In the darkness it all looked just like I felt. Wet and swampy and gloomy, very gloomy. In the morning I painted it. My memory of it is that it was probably my best painting that summerGeorgia O'Keeffe: [1913/14]
Criticism is properly the rod of divination: a hazel switch for the discovery of buried treasure, not a birch twig for the castigation of offenders.arthur symons: An Introduction to the Study of Browning, preface (1906)
Ayr, gurgling, kissed his pebbled shore, O'erhung with wild woods, thickening green; The fragrant birch and hawthorn hoar Twined amorous round the raptured scene.Robert Burns, To Mary in Heaven, reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 53.
Along the river's summer walk, The withered tufts of asters nod; And trembles on its arid stalk The hoar plume of the golden-rod. And on a ground of sombre fir, And azure-studded juniper, The silver birch its buds of purple shows, And scarlet berries tell where bloomed the sweet wild-rose![[John Greenleaf Whittier, The Last Walk in Autumn.
Bill was responsible for rejecting the John Birch Society and the other kooks who passed off anti-Semitism or some such as conservatism. ... Without Bill if he had decided to become an academic or a businessman or something else without him, there probably would be no respectable conservative movement in this country.buckley, william f., jr.: Hugh Kenner, as quoted in "William F. Buckley Jr. Is Dead at 82" in The New York Times (27 February 2008)
I’d like to go by climbing a birch tree, And climb black branches up a snow-white trunk Toward heaven, till the tree could bear no more, But dipped its top and set me down again. That would be good both going and coming back. One could do worse than be a swinger of birches.robert frost: "Birches" (1920)
In midmost of the stream, embraced in the weir's shimmering arm-spread, a small island lay anchored, fringed close with willow and silver birch and alder. Reserved, shy, but full of significance, it hid whatever it might hold behind a veil, keeping it till the hour should come, and, with the hour, those who were called and chosen.Kenneth Grahame: Ch. 7 (The Reluctant Dragon)
Tom Birch is as brisk as a bee in conversation; but no sooner does he take a pen in his hand than it becomes a torpedo to him, and benumbs all his faculties.samuel johnson: 1743.
The birch, most shy and lady-like of trees, Her poverty, as best she may, retrieves, And hints at her foregone gentilities With some saved relics of her wealth of leaves.james russell lowell: An Indian Summer Reverie, st. 8 (1846).
An old Russian lady who has for some obscure reason begged me not to divulge her name, happened to show me in Paris the diary she had kept in the past. .... I cannot see any real necessity of complying with her anonymity. That she will ever read this book seems wildly improbable. Her name was and is Olga Olegovna Orlova an egg-like alliteration which it would have been a pity to whithold. Her dry account cannot convey to the untravelled reader the implied delights of a winter day such as she describes in St. Petersburg; the pure luxury of a cloudless sky designed not to warm the flesh, but solely to please the eye; the sheen of sledge-cuts on the hard-beaten snow of spacious streets with a tawny tinge about the middle tracks due to a rich mixture of horse-dung; the brightly coloured bunch of toy-balloons hawked by an aproned pedlar; the soft curve of a cupola, its gold dimmed by the bloom of powdery frost; the birch trees in the public gardens, every tiniest twig outlined white; the rasp and twinkle of winter traffic… and by the way how queer it is when you look at an old picture postcard (like the one I have placed on my desk to keep the child of memory amused for the moment) to consider the haphazard way Russian cabs had of turning whenever they liked, anywhere and anyhow, so that instead of the straight , self-conscious stream of modern traffic one sees on this painted photograph a dream-wide street with droshkies all awry under incredibly blue skies, which farther away, melt automatically into a pink flush of mnemonic banality.vladimir nabokov: p. 5 (The Real Life of Sebastian Knight (1941))
My cry could only waken him. And what a poor gift: I, confined to my own form, when I used to be a birch, a lizard shedding times and satin skins in many shimmering hues.wisława szymborska: "I Am Too Close..."
I'm all for bringing back the birch, but only between consenting adults.gore vidal: TV interview with David Frost and quoted in The Sunday Times Magazine 16 September 1973
Look for me when the sun-bright swallow Sings upon the birch bough high.The Decemberists, "Yankee Bayonet", from The Crane Wife (2006)
The laurell, meed of mightie conquerours And poets sage; the firre that weepeth still; The willow, worne of forlorne paramours; The eugh, obedient to the bender's will; The birch, for shafts; the sallow for the mill; The mirrhe sweete-bleeding in the bitter wound; The warlike beech; the ash for nothing ill; The fruitfull olive; and the platane round; The carver holme; the maple seldom inward sound.Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene (1589-96), Book I, Canto I, Stanza 8.
A hieratic papyrus, included in the Rhind collection of the British Museum, was deciphered by Eisenlohr in 1877, and found to be a mathematical manual containing problems in arithmetic and geometry . It was written by Ahmes some time before 1700 B.C., and was founded on an older work believed by Birch to date back as far as 3400 B.C.! This curious papyrus -- the most ancient mathematical handbook known to us -- puts us at once in contact with the mathematical thought in Egypt of three or five thousand years ago. It is entitled "Directions for obtaining the Knowledge of all Dark Things." We see from it that the Egyptians cared but little for theoretical results. Theorems are not found in it at all. It contains "hardly any general rules of procedure, but chiefly mere statements of results intended possibly to be explained by a teacher to his pupils."p. 10 (The Egyptians)
A hieratic papyrus, included in the Rhind collection of the British Museum, was deciphered by Eisenlohr in 1877, and found to be a mathematical manual containing problems in arithmetic and geometry . It was written by Ahmes some time before 1700 B.C., and was founded on an older work believed by Birch to date back as far as 3400 B.C.! This curious papyrus -- the most ancient mathematical handbook known to us -- puts us at once in contact with the mathematical thought in Egypt of three or five thousand years ago. It is entitled "Directions for obtaining the Knowledge of all Dark Things." We see from it that the Egyptians cared but little for theoretical results. Theorems are not found in it at all. It contains "hardly any general rules of procedure, but chiefly mere statements of results intended possibly to be explained by a teacher to his pupils."Florian Cajori (1893) A History of Mathematics p. 10
Tom Birch is as brisk as a bee in conversation; but no sooner does he take a pen in his hand, than it becomes a torpedo to him, and benumbs all his faculties.Samuel Johnson, reported in James Boswell, Life of Johnson (1743).
Betula albosinensis Chinese Birch, ultimately makes a 15 metre (50ft) graceful tree with glossy green leaves turning golden yellow in the autumn .John Freeman, in Create Your Own Woodland Garden, Dreamstairway Books, 2010, p,45