This Thing Called Courage

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

More on Burnt Hill

IN MY BLOG A FEW DAYS AGO (Western Swing Part II) I wrote about Benson Place, the home of Dave Gott atop Burnt Hill in Heath, Massachusetts. I mentioned briefly (I think) the megaliths atop the hill, and since then have wanted to post a few links to some more information on them. One of these days I'll sit down with Dave and pick his brain about what he knows about them, and share that here. In the meantime, here's a photo of the arrangement (above) as well as a few links. Apparently the artist Robert Strong Woodward (whose artwork adorns that particular blog entry) wasn't the only famous artist living here-- at one time the horror/science fiction writer H.P. Lovecraft summered here; in fact, according to one of the articles I read, the megaliths were the inspiration for the story, 'The Dunwich Horror,' if I remember the title correctly.

Here's some articles:

and another

and here, this one has great photos:


Blogger berlinorama said...

I envy you getting to see all those wonderful birds! Of course, pigeons and crows are beautiful too (don't see much else around here where I live), but it isn't quite the same thing. I did have the surreal experience the other evening about 10 of seeing a fox with something in its mouth (a rat?) running down the street right past my corner. It was exciting and sad at the same time, because this fox was obviously a bit lost. Although Berlin is surrounded by woods, I have twice seen foxes along the train tracks near here, with their rather wild vegetation.

11:12 AM  
Blogger BiscuitsBoy said...

Oh My God-- I love foxes-- Fionn is after all half fox himself. That is a very powerful image and, you're right,a little sad. I hope he/she found their way home with supper. I saw a fox once two years ago and inadvertently saved its life. I was walking with my friend Billy, and Fionn, along the Fellsway-- it was justa little after rush hour and still very busy with traffic. A fox tore out of the woods as if to cross the street (where it would have been smacked) but saw us and did an instant U-turn. It was amazingly beautiful. I'm wondering what the reappearence of coyotes in this area has done to the fox population-- I understand foxes won't settle where coyotes are.

1:01 PM  
Blogger berlinorama said...

The fox I saw was headed towards a pretty big street so I hope it is alright. Maybe it didn't cross but hung a right at the next corner and doubled back through the soccer field? At least the traffic wasn't too heavy at that time of night, but one does worry. The mammals most often sighted in Berlin, by the way (aside from rats) are hedgehogs, rabbits and especially wild boar. The woods are full of them and you really have to watch your dogs, especially in the spring when they have their babies with them. Those mother boars are really fierce! They have been known not only to gore dogs but also demolish phone boxes.

9:47 AM  
Blogger BiscuitsBoy said...

Hi Pam,
Those boars sound like rough customers, and something we don't have here-- not in the northeast anyway, unless you count some of our politicans....and hopefully that fox was okay-- they're pretty smart critters and one sees far less of them as roadkill than, say, raccoons or possums. The other night, behind Wild Oast in Medford (a Whole Foods-type store) I saw a hawk sitting atop the huge 'U' in the 'U-Haul' sign atop a warehouse, eating a pigeon it had just killed. Pretty amazing. I hope all the birds we saw last week (when it was seventy) were okay Friday when we got a late-season Nor'easter...

10:43 PM  
Blogger berlinorama said...

I think I've been to that Wild Oats store. Oh my God, a hawk on a U-Haul sign! Since we are swopping animal-sighting stories, a few years ago in winter I spotted a snowy owl in a tree in a city park only a mile from my house. My friend Debs and I were gobstruck to say the least.

6:05 AM  
Blogger BiscuitsBoy said...

Wow, a snowy owl!!! I've never seen one in my life, although I have seen a Great Horned Owl. I watched him in a bunch of pine trees ten feet away from where I was parked one night, then he flew away-- massive wing span, really huge. Do you know Garden in the Woods? It's the headquarters of the New England Wildflower Society-- beautiful place, and they have tons of courses one can take on gardening, wild flowers, identification, etc-- they're having an owl woman come in, in August, and she brings her six owls with her for a show-- I'll definitely be there!

10:02 PM  
Blogger berlinorama said...

I had no idea there was a New England Wildflower Society. Where is it? I will have to check it out on my next trip. My stays in the Boston area are usually restricted to trying to sneak into one of the libraries at Harvard, visiting museums and going out to eat when my friend Steve (the one in Medford) gets home from work. He doesn't have a car so we don't get out of town much (except for one jaunt to Concord a few years ago in the dead of January where we froze our toes walking to Walden Pond and the cemetery). So I have seen little of local nature, alas.
I have never heard of an owl show, but I look forward to reading about it in your blog. I know people do shows with hawks and falcons, though I've never been to one myself.

4:39 AM  
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