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This is what I believe: That I am I.
That my soul is a dark forest.
That my known self will never be
more than a little clearing in the forest.

That gods, strange gods, come forth from the forest
into the clearing of my known self, and then go back.

That I must have the courage
to let them come and go.

That I will never let mankind put anything over me,
but that I will try always to recognise and submit
to the gods in me and the gods in other
men and women. There is my creed.

D.H. Lawrence

As Jung said, 'Myths are public dreams, dreams are private myths.'

The artworks on this page are inspired by dreams and journeys which I
feel go beyond the personal to touch the world Soul in some way…and
explore poetry and myths with which I feel an intimate connection.

Wandering Aengus

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I went out to the Hazel wood
Because a fire was in my head

W B Yeats

Here is a large project nested into a larger project, both of which
I've been working on for some time ~ the larger project being a little
temple I've been building at beautiful Rennaldburn where I live.

It's called Altair air Abhainn (pronounced altair ar aveyn),
Gaelic for Alter at the stream, since it overlooks the upper
reaches of the burn that gives Rennaldburn its name.

Two of Altair's sides are made from big bay windows, and I decided to cast
glass panels for them. Loving Yeats's poem, 'The Song of Wandering Aengus',
I chose to use one of the bay windows as a canvas for its illustration.

As is the nature of open-cast glass, while some casts completely break apart after one
casting, others survive more intact and can be used for another piece. This means I can create
limited editions as I work…and you can share in the homecoming of Wandering Aengus :)

Here is Yeats's poem in full:

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.

When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire a-flame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And someone called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.

Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done,
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.

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The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.

framed cast glass

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I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,

framed cast glass

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I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands.

framed cast glass


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This glass painting was inspired by a dream in which an
eternal flame with a deeply sacred feel burned in a mountain cave.
Beneath the flame, a man ceaselessly played on an instrument
like a smallpipes. By doing so, the flame was kept vibrant and alive.

It was only after I depicted the image that I realised that I had been shown an image of Kokopelli.
This ancient, Pied Piper-esque trickster and fertility deity is well-loved amongst Native Americans
of the Southwest states, where many rock carvings can be found depicting him playing a flute,
and with a hump-back which is thought to be a sack of songs and seeds.

framed painted glass

Grail Quest

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Maiden of the Well

framed painted glass layered with fused glass plant inclusions

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Dream Mountain

highly textured, slumped, fused glass

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© shen chökyi 2013