Denise Goldberg's blog

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

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

a garden walk

Today felt like a good day for a walk at Tower Hill Botanic Garden. I headed out with the goal of arriving right at the opening time, hoping for a reasonably quiet visit on this July 4th holiday.

Some summer flowers were present; others had not yet started blooming. I'll plan a return visit as summer continues to unfold.

a flower in pink

More photos from today's visit can be seen in the gallery Tower Hill Botanic Garden :: 2017 starting with this photo and ending here.

Sunday, July 02, 2017


Berries in shades of red and orange provided a pop of color as I walked in Halibut Point State Park.


Saturday, July 01, 2017

to Halibut Point

There are a number of places not too far from home where I can satisfy my need for an ocean visit. Early yesterday morning I headed to Halibut Point State Park in Rockport, MA. I had the park almost to myself; what a treat!

The park is a former granite quarry. There is a path that circles the water-filled former quarry and a path that leads to the rocky coastline. No human access to the waters of the quarry are allowed. While I visited I had a view of the many sea birds (gulls, and ducks) resting on rocks close to the surface of the water.

It was a good morning for a quiet wander in a beautiful place.

water filled quarry, at Halibut Point State Park

coastline, at Halibut Point State Park

More photos are available in the gallery Halibut Point :: 2017.

Friday, June 30, 2017


This almost opened poppy wears an interesting shape. Two petals are fully open, two fold inward.

poppy, folded

Thursday, June 29, 2017

still waters

The quiet waters of a pond in provides a canvas for reflections.

trees and reflections, Harold Parker State Forest
in Harold Parker State Forest

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

from petals to seed pods

I find it interesting to see the transition between flowers in full bloom and the next stage of floral life, seed pods. Visiting tthe same garden across the seasons allows me to see the changes.


seed pod

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

summer's iris

One of my favorite flowers is iris. It presents an intricate bloom encompassing a number of variations. When the earlier in spring varieties have disappeared the flatter topped Japanese iris (also known as Iris ensata) are a delight to see.

Japanese iris

Sunday, June 25, 2017


Yesterday I headed to Lowell for a walk along the canals, an exploration of sorts.

I was fascinated by a moving sculpture, Pawtucket Prism, created by Michio Ihara. The sculpture was created 30 years ago and it was restored last year.

Created by sculptor Michio Ihara, of Concord, in 1987, the old silver- and gold-colored cubes were water-powered, intended to be spun by water. But the cubes had corroded with the water-powered system too difficult to maintain.

The metal cubes are now new and balanced in order to be moved by the wind, the work done by Ihara.

from the article Pawtucket Prism reborn in the Lowell Sun

I stood for a bit to watch the movement of the cubes. It was both mesmerizing and calming.

Pawtucket Prism, by Michio Ihara

Photos of buildings, canals, and assorted art jumped into my camera as I walked. You can view the photos in the gallery a walk in Lowell, 2017.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

cactus flowers

My sister has some cactus blooming in her garden, a misplaced but thriving plant in the southeastern corner of Pennsylvania. My first outside cactus blooms popped up today; as I was driving down a street not too far from home a splash of yellow caught my eye.

I didn't expect to see flowering cactus thriving outside in northeastern Massachusetts. What a wonderful surprise!

cactus flowers

Friday, June 23, 2017


As I headed to the area of Maudslay State Park where stands of mountain laurel flourish, I walked by the end of Flowering Pond. Reflections of trees in the still waters of the pond created serenity.

Flowering Pond, Maudslay State Park

Thursday, June 22, 2017

mountain laurel

One of the things Maudslay State Park is known for is " of the largest naturally-occurring stands of mountain laurel in Massachusetts". I had never before walked in the area of the park where the mountain laurel live; today I set out to correct that lapse.

It was simply amazing to be in the woods surrounded by a sea of exquisite white flowers.

mountain laurel

Wednesday, June 21, 2017


It seems that the flowers in the garden know that the summer solstice has arrived. The beauties of late spring - the iris and the peonies - are faded and almost gone. Summer blooms are starting to arrive.

While I prefer the cooler temperatures of spring and autumn, the longer days of summer can be a treat. Technically the solstice started at 12:24 AM today, making yesterday the longest day of the year.

wild rose

If you're curious about the solstice you may be interested in the article Summer solstice is here. What does it mean? in today's Boston Globe.

Monday, June 19, 2017

back to the beach

Today felt like a good time to visit the completed sand sculptures at Hampton Beach. While the light later in the day would have been kinder from both a photographic and a looking point of view, I chose to listen to the forecast of a severe thunderstorm watch for the afternoon, heading to the beach in the early morning.

I headed straight for the sand sculptures, comparing the in progress work in my mind with the finished creations waiting to delight the eye.

Get out of the box, by Abe Waterman

I walked on the beach for a while, eventually moving to the sidewalk as the water encroached on the sea wall. The air inland was a bit muggy but there was cool air rising from the ocean, a wonderful feeling.

Photos of the finished sculptures can be seen in the gallery emergence :: Hampton Beach 2017 starting with this photo.

Sunday, June 18, 2017


Tiny flowers appear in a cloud of white.

tiny flowers in white

Saturday, June 17, 2017

emerging from sand

This is the week of the annual Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Classic. The solo competition runs for three days, with the sculptors set to work specified hours on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Since I enjoy seeing the work in progress, I headed to Hampton Beach in the middle of the day yesterday.

The sculptors were on their lunch break when I arrived. That meant I could see the sculptures at a quiet point, and that I was able to watch some of the creative process a bit later. As always, I'm in awe at what these skillful sculptors are able to create from sand.

Keep in mind that the sculptures in the photos below are works in progress; work time left included Friday afternoon, and Saturday.

Look at the eyes in the second sculpture below, simply amazing.

sand sculpture at Hampton Beach

sand sculpture at Hampton Beach

The full gallery can be seen by clicking emergence :: Hampton Beach 2017.

My goal is to head back within the next few days to see the finished creations.

Thursday, June 15, 2017


I was about to head for home when I looked up and saw an impressionist painting, a reflection on the surface of a pond at Harold Parker State Forest.

I moved closer to the water, looking, enjoying the beauty.

a watercolor, at Harold Parker State Forest

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

a busy bee

As my eyes seek the color and shapes of a beautiful garden, bees feast on the nectar of the flowers.

bee on flower

Tuesday, June 13, 2017


You can see a glimpse of the pale purple flowers of a false blue indigo in the background. This evening the green of the opening leaves caught my eyes.

leaves of a false blue indigo

calm water

Yesterday afternoon I braved the heat for a walk along the water in Portsmouth, NH.

It's always interesting to see the current state of construction on the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge between Portsmouth and Kittery. There are more connected (or almost connected) bridge sections in place than there were the last time I visited.

Sarah Mildred Long Bridge construction

The new bridge is scheduled to open to traffic in late September or early October, with project completion in June of 2018.

If you're curious, check the MaineDOT page The Sarah Mildred Long Bridge Replacement - The Regional River Crossing .

Monday, June 12, 2017


I spotted a rabbit happily munching on grass this evening. Somehow I managed to sneak outside without startling him; moving closer was not an option.


Sunday, June 11, 2017


Purple shines in this beauty of an iris.

purple iris in late day light

Saturday, June 10, 2017


This afternoon I followed an urge to walk at Maudslay State Park. I had no flower expectations although I suspected I would find color popping in the woods.

It was peaceful. Although there were other people walking and mountain biking, I found solitude in the woods.

As I turned a corner on the trail I heard a crashing noise. I stood still, quiet, looking around. As I turned my head to the left I saw a deer looking back at me. We both stood silently for a few minutes, watching each other.

Later, my eyes caught some bright flowers, azalea in wonderful shades of orange. Oh look! A butterfly, enjoying the flowers, stayed on its floral perch and posed for me.

a deer in the woods

butterfly on azalea