Denise Goldberg's blog

Saturday, August 19, 2017

on the walls (again)

Yesterday morning I ignored the forecast for rain and headed back to Salem. I had a sneaking suspicion that I had missed a couple of murals on my last visit; I needed to fix that.

My first stop was the office of the North Shore Community Development Coalition. They own the buildings in The Point that are the canvas for the murals. I was delighted have the chance to chat with a manager there and to find out more about the project. It was an opportunity to see some of the murals in the office and to confirm that I did miss a few on my first visit.

I loved this one - there is a purple background mural on the wall in the office, with a set of windows allowing a view into the space behind, a space showing the eyes of a face peering through the windows.

in the office of the North Shore Community Development Coalition

Outside, I walked the same streets I had seen before, continuing past my previous stopping point to find two more pieces of art.

The first was a very large and multi-colored cat person covering the entire side of a building.

cat person on a wall

The second set of art that I missed lives in the open courtyard in front of a building. It is made up of columns of brick, painted on all four sides and showing faces of different ages and nationalities.

faces on brick columns

faces on brick columns

More photos from yesterday can be seen in the gallery walls and water :: Salem, MA starting with this photo and ending here.

Friday, August 18, 2017


Berries create a pop of red among summer's green leaves.

red berries

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

on the Royal River

Royal River Park in Yarmouth, ME is the site of a path that parallels the river. A good part of the trail is a bit of a tease since the river is hidden by the trees. An unobstructed view is available at a few places, and the bridges are very helpful.

Royal River

Tuesday, August 15, 2017


A sea gull stands on the beach, watching as the tide recedes.

sea gull at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

Monday, August 14, 2017


Some flowers are still showing bright flowers; others are fading.

A garden full of coneflowers (properly named Echinacea) caught my eye as I wandered in Prescott Park. This patch was still bright even though the petals are starting to show their age. The flowers wear a shape that perfectly matches their name.


These flowers are beautiful, aren't they?

Sunday, August 13, 2017

chasing butterflies

Yesterday's visit to the gardens in Prescott Park (Portsmouth, NH) gave me a chance to watch the butterflies as they feasted on flowers. This beauty, hanging from a butterfly bush, stayed still for a moment and posed for me.

a butterfly on a butterfly bush

Saturday, August 12, 2017


A quiet beach is a very peaceful place, a good destination for walking and thinking.

on the beach at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

Friday, August 11, 2017


Delicate cosmos (flowers) seem to be dancing in the wind.


Thursday, August 10, 2017


A shell sits on smooth sand as the tide moves from high to low.

sea shell

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

back to the beach

A large section of the beach at the Parker River Wildlife Refuge reopened on Friday for people. The beach at the refuge closes on April 1st of each year for the piping plover nesting season, opening to people when the birds are done with it.

As of last Friday there were 45 fledglings and 6 chicks at Parker River. The portion of the beach that is still closed will open once the biologist confirms that the 6 remaining chicks have fledged.

It's good that this very narrow (and long) beach is closed each year for the birds. I think it makes me treasure access to the beach even more; it's a favorite place to walk along the water.

Yesterday I headed to the refuge for a peaceful stroll, looking, listening to the ocean, enjoying the beauty.

the beach at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, just south of parking lot 3

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

on the walls

The article "Artwork highlights Salem neighborhood’s true colors" in the Boston Globe two weeks ago led me to add Salem to my list of must visit places. It's less than 20 miles from home, but it's a place I hadn't visited before. Yesterday I headed to to Salem to walk and absorb beauty.

The mural project is impressive.

Punto Urban Art Museum

Our vision is to create a world class urban arts district in Salem’s Point Neighborhood, one that embraces its rich immigrant and architectural history and present a dynamic opportunity for the neighborhood’s future.

The Punto Urban Art Museum has two primary goals: to create a beautiful, uplifting environment for Point residents, particularly for children to grow up in, and to break down the invisible divide between the Point and the rest of Salem by inviting visitors into the Point to experience world-class art first-hand.

credit: North Shore Community Development Coalition

Some of the murals are in very narrow alleys; even with a wide lens it was a challenge to capture them with my camera.

I'm sure I didn't find all of the murals, and I know I plan to return and wander again.

mural in Salem, MA

mural in Salem, MA

More photos can be seen in the gallery walls and water :: Salem, MA.

Click here to see a video on the Punto Urban Art Museum published by the North Shore Community Development coalition. It's a wonderful presentation of the project.

Sunday, August 06, 2017


The curved petals of this just opening flower are reaching to the sun.

curves in opening flower petals

Saturday, August 05, 2017

away from the edge

An observation platform at the Marconi Station site in Cape Cod National Seashore provides a wonderful view of the high dunes and the beach far below. The platform is fenced and wears a sign warning of instability. I always wonder how many people ignore both the fence and the sign; a step too close to the edge could end with a long fall.

What a beautiful place!

warning sign near Marconi Station overlook

high above Marconi Beach, Cape Cod National Seashore

Friday, August 04, 2017


Flowers moving in the wind create blurred and dreamy visions.

flower in the wind

Thursday, August 03, 2017

signs of summer

Emerging dahlias are a sure sign of summer warmth.


Tuesday, August 01, 2017

one flower

In a garden full of color I captured a single zinnia against a hazy background showing the colors of other flowers.


Monday, July 31, 2017

a happy bee

The bees are very active, flying, landing, feeding on the nectar of flowers in the garden. It's easy to stand and watch without worrying about the bees; they are so interested in the flowers that they don't seem to acknowledge any human presence.

a bee feeding on a globe thistle (echinops)

Sunday, July 30, 2017

a coastal walk

Friday morning brought low tide, blue skies decorated with clouds, reasonable temperature.

It was a good day for a walk along the coast. I headed to New Hampshire, stopping whenever something interesting caught my eye, walking a loop in Odiorne Point State Park.

in Odiorne Point State Park

Saturday, July 29, 2017


Blurred orange of zinnia in the background provides a perfect complement to the bright pink of this dianthus.

in the gardens of Prescott Park

Friday, July 28, 2017

a quick visit :: Cape Cod

Provincetown is a place that my mom & sister enjoy visiting; this week it was time for their multi-day wander at the tip of the cape. While I'm not fond of towns that are packed with people, heading down for a day (and night) allowed us to have a good visit.

We spent the day outside, visiting Mass Audobon's Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary as well as several beaches in the Cape Cod National Seashore.

view from the Province Lands Visitor Center
view from the Province Lands Visitor Center, looking to Race Point Beach

on Marconi Beach
beyond the "peopled" section of Marconi Beach, just after low tide

More photos can be viewed in the gallery glimpses of Cape Cod National Seashore :: 2017.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

pretty in pink

A cosmos flower moves in the wind. Its delicate petals create a bright splash of color.

cosmos (flower)

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


This sea gull was enjoying a quiet section of Marconi Beach, calmly balancing on one leg.

sea gull, Marconi Beach

Monday, July 24, 2017


Here's another offering from Lynn's Beyond Walls. When I saw this mural by Cedric "Vise" Douglas I felt the need to stand and look for a while. What a stunning portrait!

mural by Cedric “Vise” Douglas

Sunday, July 23, 2017

beyond walls

Listening to NPR brings me more than news. On July 13th, a story aired that talked about the Beyond Walls Mural Festival in Lynn, MA. The focus of the 10-day festival: "19 international and local artists will converge on the city's downtown to turn 15 blank, brick walls into towering, outdoor works of public art".

I immediately knew I needed to make at least one trip to Lynn to see the new murals. I chose to visit yesterday while the artists were still at work on their almost completed creations. Some of the art is on walls extending to ground level; some is high above the roofs of surrounding buildings.

The murals were simply amazing!

mural by David Zayas

More photos of the murals can be seen in the gallery beyond walls :: Lynn, MA.

Interestingly enough there was an article in yesterday's Boston Globe titled Artwork highlights Salem neighborhood’s true colors that focused on murals in Salem, MA. I will visit there soon.

Saturday, July 22, 2017


Summer warmth encourages flowers. That means it's a very good time to walk in the garden, to see the newly opened (and opening) blooms.

opening soon

Friday, July 21, 2017

quiet waters

A pair of mute swans enjoy the quiet inland waters at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge.

mute swans

Thursday, July 20, 2017


As I walking in the woods a flash of bright red caught my eye. When I looked closer I saw small red berries adding a bit of brightness to the green leaves.

berries in red

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

dahlia delight

Seeing the first dahlias open each summer is wonderful; it's a good reason for a garden visit.


Monday, July 17, 2017

summer flowers

Echinachea always leaves me with a feeling of summer. I think this flower is a good symbol of the season. Do you agree?


Sunday, July 16, 2017

art & ocean

An ad for an outdoor sculpture exhibit at the Wells Reserve caught my eye a few weeks ago. I haven't visited in a long time; that ad reminded me it was time.

I headed to Wells, Maine last Friday under a cloudy sky, hoping that any rain I encountered would be reasonable for walking with a camera. Luckily before I headed out of the door I grabbed some bug dope; the non-oceanfront part of the reserve was teeming with mosquitoes.

I enjoyed the Power of Place sculptures as I walked to the coast and back again, taking time for a beach walk between the two sections of the exhibit.

If you're interested in seeing the sculptures yourself, the exhibit is scheduled to run through early October.

Of course it's safe, sculpture by John Wilkinson

at Wells Reserve

More photos can be seen in the gallery Wells Reserve :: 2017.

Saturday, July 15, 2017


As I moved to the inland side of Plum Island (during my visit on Tuesday) the light changed. Calm waters shimmered, creating a magical look.

inland waters, Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

Friday, July 14, 2017


Red clover pops up in many places. This one lives on the inland side of the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge.

It shows a simple beauty.


Thursday, July 13, 2017

bright purple

Globe thistle (Echiops ritro) initially emerges in green. Its response to living in bright sunlight is to morph into a beautiful shade of purple.

I enjoy watching the transition.

globe thistle

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

mystical morning

I woke up yesterday morning with thoughts of walking along the coast. My departure was delayed by rain; as soon as it stopped I headed to the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. The beach there remains closed for the piping plover nesting season so my ultimate destination was Sandy Point State Reservation, a state park at the southern tip of the island where the birds share the beach with people year-round.

I looked into the very quiet beach in the wildlife refuge. The closure was well-signed, with large signs at the top of the beach and stakes stating "no entry" marching to the water's edge.

beach closed

no entry

There are active pairs of piping plovers on the state park beach as well as in the wildlife refuge. The refuge road is 6 1/2 miles long. Given that the road parallels the edge of the island, the protected beach is the same length. It's good to have a protected place for these endangered birds to nest.

I'm happy that the beach is closed to protect the birds but I have to admit that it was good to be able to walk around the end of the island. It was mid-morning on a weekday that started with a downpour so there weren't too many people at Sandy Point. Ah, a quiet space for walking is always wonderful.

As I walked closer to the tip of the island the fog rolled in. Conditions varied as I walked, from heavy fog with little visibility to a band of white hovering above the water. It was beautiful.

from the end of Plum Island

More photos from yesterday's coastal wander can be seen in the gallery Parker River, and... 2017 starting with this photo and ending here.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017


It's not often that I see herbs that I enjoy as a tea growing in the garden.

The flowers of chamomile create a pop of color.

chamomile in bloom

Sunday, July 09, 2017


There is a rocky spit curving away from the New Hampshire coastline just south of Odiorne State Park. Many sets of stacked rocks imply that this small piece of land must sit above the high tide line.

It would be interesting to know how long these stacked rock "sculptures" have been there. I can't remember a time when I didn't see them.

stacked rock sculpture

Saturday, July 08, 2017

unexpected color

When I picture daisies I always see the common daisy, a flower with white petals and a yellow center. I was delighted to see African daisies in the gardens of Prescott Park, daisies wearing bright colors. The purple of these just opening flowers caught my eyes.

African daisies in purple

More photos from the gardens of Prescott Park can be seen in the gallery New Hampshire coast :: 2017 starting with this photo and ending here.

Friday, July 07, 2017

silky water

It was a gray morning, a good time to satisfy a need for a walk along the coast. I headed to the New Hampshire and was quite lucky to have some relatively dry walking time before the rain came.

The waters of Rye Harbor were quiet with moored boats creating a peaceful scene.

boats in Rye Harbor

More photos from my walk along the coast today can be seen in the gallery New Hampshire coast :: 2017 starting with this photo and ending here.

a mulch monster

Funny, when I arrived at Prescott Park in Portsmouth today I saw what I thought was an oddly placed pile of mulch. Luckily I approached it from a different angle when it was time to head home.

With a face and spines along its back, a mulch monster lives in (and guards) the garden!

mulch monster in Prescott Park

Thursday, July 06, 2017

from the side

As I walked through the garden a bed of daisies caught my eye. It's always interesting to look at flowers from different angles; crouching down and looking from the side created an interesting perspective.


Wednesday, July 05, 2017


A new leaf emerges, curled before opening fully. Its bright green color is highlighted by a purple edge.

emerging leaf, curled