Heyoka Moon

Pamela Phelps

Phillipsport, United States

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Artist's Description

If you take the moon in your hands
and turn it around
(heavy, slightly tarnished platter)
you’re there;

If you pull dry seaweed from the sand
and turn it around
and wonder at the underside’s bright amber,
your eyes

Look out as they did here
(You don’t remember)
when my soul turned round,

perceiving the other-side of everything,
mullein-leaf, dogwood leaf, moth-wing
and dandelion-seed under the ground."
~Hilda Doolittle

The Heyoka were part of the Lakota Indian tribes. They were known as the “sacred clowns” and were considered shamans. The Heyoka functions both as a mirror and a teacher, using extreme behaviors to mirror others, thereby forcing them to examine their own doubts, fears, hatreds, and weaknesses. Heyokas also have the power to heal emotional pain; such power comes from the experience of shame–they sing of shameful events in their lives, beg for food, and live as clowns. They provoke laughter in distressing situations of despair and provoke fear and chaos when people feel complacent and overly secure, to keep them from taking themselves too seriously or believing they are more powerful than they are. In doing so, they demonstrate concretely the theories of balance and imbalance. Their role is to penetrate deception, turn over rocks, and create a deeper awareness.

Composed in Photoshop. Native Americans courtesy of Dana of Deviant Art (altered for purpose of image through face mask painting and beading division)
Horses courtesy of FTLO of Deviant Art
one background courtesy of moonchildLjiLja of Deviant Art
One Texture courtesy of Ava Verino of Flickr
Two backgrounds of my own with effects through filters in Photoshop.

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Artwork Comments

  • JRGarland
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  • © Kira Bodensted
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  • Evita
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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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