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DEATH , The WHEEL , The FOOL , The Magician, The High Priestess , Lovers , The Sage, The Sacrifice, PAN , The TOWER , The STAR , The Moon, The SUN , Resurrection and The World.


Schattenspiel Tarot
by Linda Dawn Hammond
Nine Dreams

(of which one is not)

Excerpts from the dream diary of
Linda Dawn Hammond
Dreams experienced during the making of the
Schattenspiel Tarot series.


The myth is the public dream and the dream is the private myth
Joseph Campbell

1. The Golden Gods 2. The Hanging Man 3. Canoe God 4. Blow-up Jesus 5. Little Frog 6. Big Horse 7. Arranged Marriage 8. Spraypaint 9. The Pits of Mortgoth

1. The Golden Gods

In this dream, I was in bed in my room in Montreal. It was very dark. Suddenly Hiram, the friend who assisted me in my series "Personal Needs", was beside me. "They're waiting for you.", he told me. I looked over towards the foot of my bed where I had placed an antique room divider. It was glowing as if a golden light was illuminating it from behind."I can't," I replied, "I have to save myself for Goldmund." (Note: Goldmund was the name I'd given my lover.)

Suddenly I found myself behind the screen, as if I'd been transported there. The screen normally blocked a very narrow closet area, but it had grown larger and three very tall golden gods stood before me. They were the source of the light. Of the two who stood with their backs to me, one was a woman, but she had the muscular body of a man and I wondered how I knew that she was female. The two men were in conversation and I looked at the abdomen of the man facing me and saw a strange scarification. It was kidney-shaped yet uneven, and filled with a hounds tooth pattern. Unlike regular scarifications it was not reddish but silver, and I realized this meant that they had silver blood running through their veins.


(Note: The next morning when I awoke, there was a mark on my abdomen in the same place as the god's. It appeared as 4 dots, forming a perfect square, and remained for a week. It was later diagnosed as was an adult form of chickenpox.)

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2. The Hanging Man

I was at a vernissage, held at the top of a tall building in New York City. A Native artist was exhibiting his sculpture. It was a very sophisticated affair with many rich people milling about, sipping drinks and talking.

The sculpture was a relief made of white stone of about 18 feet in length and 7 feet in height. Carved into it were ocean waves carrying upon them a school of fish. To the right was the mask of an eagle's head, as seen by its profile. There was an empty space behind the mask, a void which extended into the center between the waves.

I saw the artist at a distance and approached him. He appeared to be of a solitary nature, but at the same time exuded a quiet calm. I remarked to myself that he looked to be of Inuit origin- he reminded me of Natives I had known in the Yukon. He was a pleasant looking man in his mid 30s, with long black hair pulled back in a ponytail and a somewhat rotund body.

I asked him to explain the meaning of the indentations in the sculpture. He smiled at me indulgently, and then placed himself physically within it. His body at once melted within the form, warm flesh complimenting cold stone, the roundness of his male belly becoming that of a pregnant female's suspended upon the waves. Where his head had disappeared behind the eagle, living eyes darted disconcertingly, made visible through slits in the frozen mask.

He emerged from the sculpture and said, "Come with me." We walked through glass doors out onto a roof where more people were engaged in conversation. He then turned towards me, and in a soft, solemn voice which bespoke of finality, stated with simplicity, "This is the end." And continuing to watch me steadily, stepped backwards and off the side of the roof.

I ran to the edge, afraid, only to find him hanging by his fingertips. He was looking at me with a steady, peaceful, loving gaze. We became suddenly telepathic and I understood what he was telling me-- that there was no more. All had ended at that moment, and the time that was to follow would now begin. His fingers slipped on the gravel . He was about to fall. My instinct was to reach out and "save him" but I knew that the weight of his body would take me with him, and that it wasn't towards death that we would plunge, but a privileged route for he was an enlightened being, perhaps even a god.

But I thought of my child Mishka and didn't want to leave him, lost in the confused multitude of humanity, to face what would occur alone. And this in spite of my knowledge that the physical and psychological ties which bound us to one another were no longer relevant .

I didn't reach out, and watched the hanging man slip into the Below.

It was so difficult, this act of not helping, for it ran contrary to my natural impulses. But I did not feel sadness or regret that all was over. It had merely arrived.

And I remained on the roof, where what would follow would be more complex and uncertain than the clarity of the path of the hanging man. But at least I would be there to confort my child.

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3. Canoe God

I was travelling through dense woods on a monorail with strangers . It was like being in Disneyland, yet we were in the middle of wilderness. The trees reminded me of the rain forests in B.C. but the shape of the steep, lush hills made me think of the "rainy side" of Hawaii.

We passed over a river. About 10 feet below we saw two dug-out canoes. One was fairly wrecked while the other was in perfect condition. It was 15 feet in length and there was a price tag on it! It said, For sale $125. , and we all remarked, "How cheap!", "what a bargain!" Etc. The next thing I remember, I saw the most beautiful native man paddling in it and I thought, "Oh, he must have bought it." He was in his early 20s with long black hair, high cheekbones, and very well built. He entered a cave by the bank, overhung with weeds, when suddenly the canoe tipped! I watched him fall into the water. It was incredibly clear- I thought of Lynn Canyon in B.C... I saw him struggle to reach the surface but the canoe was in the way and he began to drown. I stood transfixed, still watching him. I could see his face as if I were next to him, and his hair moved like waves in the water as he struggled for breath. Only then I realized, that I was only observing and not helping, as if his drowning was a thing of beauty. Panic set in. I plunged into the water and tried to drag him out but he was too heavy for me. The others remained behind, disinterested. After fruitless attempts by myself, I ordered the others to assist and together we managed to pull him onto land. I tried to resuscitate him. I made several attempts at applying mouth to mouth, of which I was uncertain of in terms of technique, and pounded frantically on his chest. He still didn't wake up and lay there in quiet serenity, not breathing. Finally someone said to me, "Do you realize who this is? "No", I replied, and was then told, "He is a god."


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4. Blow-up Jesus


I had a very strange dream last night. I went out on my roof (it was like my roof in Montreal only bigger) when a large almost cartoon-like figure of a bearded Jesus appeared, bobbing in the wind, on the horizon. Only the upper body was visible and it looked like a blow-up doll.

There was a ramp leading up to its belly which contained an endless stream of people on their way to salvation. They were shouting out taunts to us which actually took the form of cartoon bubbles, saying things like, "Told you so, Ha Ha!! ". I thought I was hallucinating, and asked for confirmation from the people beside me who hesitated, then finally admitted that they saw it too.

Istvan (Monty) was in the dream as well, making out with 3 guys but, as he told me, only as a joke. (He was wearing pants under the covers)I wonder how Istvan would feel about his role in my dream.

There was an art project laid out on the roof-- white rods, I think, but exactly what they were meant to be I don't recall.


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5. Little Frog

One night there was a little green furry frog who crawled into my shirt and kept giving me little kisses on the lips. He then went under a carpet/sofa and my cat went after him and I spent the next part of the dream trying to save him.

(Note: I have since found the full skeleton of a large frog in the basement. I photographed him for my Death card.)


6. Big Horse

Another dream found me sitting on the back of a beautiful 17 foot chestnut horse. I was afraid of falling but Christopher Reeve was also on this horse, in front of me, and he turned and reassured me, telling me that as a child he too had been afraid of horses. I realized in the dream that he had already been in the accident on a horse which had paralyzed him, but he was mobile again.


(Note: It was a very positive dream and I woke up feeling optimistic. I'd photographed CR some years prior to his accident during the MWFF and found him to be quite extraordinary as an individual. In the book "Shadow and Evil in Fairy tales", Von Franz writes,

"The horse is one of the purest symbolic forms of the carrying instinctual nature, that energy by which the conscious ego is supported without noticing it.")


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7. Arranged Marriage

I dreamed I was married to a horrible, complaining old man in his 60s.. To escape him, I locked him in a small balcony room in the house we shared and tried to hide in a shopping plaza. He came after me with my parents (an arranged marriage?), but eventually my father found me and told me that my husband had decided to let me go.

There was also a segment in which I was to give three gifts to DL and his girlfriend in a field. One was a large silver-coloured carved wooden chair, perhaps 10 feet high. The other was a dress which somehow matched it. The third I can no longer recall. I told them about the gifts, but when it came to the delivery, I had already put on the dress and didn't want to give it up. I sent off the other things without it, hoping they would forget of its existence, but was finally overcome with guilt and went and asked if it was alright if I kept it. They had no problem with this at all and the dilemma was resolved.

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8. Spraypaint

I had won or somehow obtained a night in an expensive hotel. It must have been the Park Plaza as this time when I called, I inquired as to whether they had a pool and sauna. The woman on the phone asked if I wouldn't mind sharing the room with another person. In my dream, it seemed like a reasonable request. The room-mate turned out to be a male photographer but I had only a brief conversation with him. I remember him discussing women in a vaguely derogatory way with a male friend, as if I wasn't present.

Next, I was in a car leaving the hotel with 2 couples -rather seedy looking punks dressed in the style of The Clash. The guys chose to adorn the parking lot with graffiti and started spray painting. One of the girls got out and asked to do it too, but her boyfriend condescendingly told her that it wasn't for girls and so she ran behind instead, enthusiastically pointing out ideas for him. Their results weren't very adept. Before getting back into the car, the driver sprayed a line across his own rear windshield, following the anti-fog strips imbedded in the glass. (It reminded me of the time I'd spray painted the bank around the corner of my place and then went home and painted the same word, "Demockery", on the inside of my own front door, made of glass, in reverse so it could be read outside. I recalled this other episode within in my dream.)

He started the car. As we drove by a group of giggling Japanese girls, one of them pulled out a can of pink spray paint and "got" our car. The driver, in anger, swerved slightly towards her. I looked back and saw her crumpled on the ground with her friends around her. I yelled that she'd been hit. Strangely enough, none of us had heard a bump. We ran back to help. She was in pain but not about to die of her injuries. She seemed more worried that she would get in trouble for spray painting our car. I told her that there was no problem-- the occupants of our car had been doing it too. She smiled weakly and said that she'd seen us and and so had thought we wouldn't mind.


The next part of the dream involved a rowboat filled with frankincense and petals. We (I was with people I didn't recognize) were supposed to get in. I was worried that it would stain our skin as it was dark brown and we would look strange, as it would only reach our chests. We were wearing white shirts.


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9. The Pits of Mortgoth

I was dancing in The Catacombs with my lover. We'd been drinking earlier but I had since decided to stop. At one point I left the dance floor to sit on a bench and watch Andre.

A man approached me, smiling. He was very interestingly dressed- the prerequisite leather and chains for a goth club perhaps, but more intricately assembled than most. He affected a courtly air as he took my hand and dramatically kissed it, and I laughed as it was such a convincingly charming gesture.

Continuing to watch me with a steady smile on his lips, he then began to make a series of flourishing gestures which revealed a series of tattoos on his body. First, he indicated his left arm with its inscribed motif, then the right and finally, partly hidden by his flowing shirt, a pentagram engraved upon his chest. It was the only symbol I recognized. He leaned towards me and said something but the music was too loud to hear anything at all, so he leaned closer yet and spoke into my ear. Afterwards I couldn't recall a word he'd said , but at the time I had understood everything.

In the middle of a sentence, his voice had suddenly receded. I could still detect it softly in the background, but now an intensely evil, growling sound engulfed it. I had the sensation of it being transmitted through the hollow of this man's body, which had expanded impossibly, and I felt that I was hovering suspended within a deep dark pit. I could sense walls, as if I were in a large damp cave, but couldn't see them. The voice was emanating from below, radiating outwards as if it came from a light source, emitting rays of demonic sounds. Then I realized with horror that I was making sense of the growlings as if they were a language I understood from a forgotten time. I panicked and in blind fear blurted out a string of revealing questions: Why Are You Doing This? Why Did You Choose Me? Why Do I Understand These Words? The moment I'd asked them I realized the mistake, although with this I didn't believe that my thoughts could be safeguarded. The other, softer voice swelled into focus momentarily, but immediately the growling returned, engulfing everything, and I became lost in fear and darkness. I recall nothing of the 45 minutes which followed.

Andre had happened to look over when I had been approached. He too had enjoyed the dramatic display and assumed that we were acquainted. The man and I had then performed a strange dance together. He had gone down on his knees as I stood above him, laughing approvingly, and lifting my hand as if he were a puppet on a tight, invisible string, I began raising and lowering him back towards the ground. We were in such perfect synchronicity, that Andre had become even more convinced that the man and I had contacts of old. He started to walk towards us, but suddenly felt constricted by the atmosphere and decided instead to go out for fresh air. He was gone a long time. When he returned , I was nowhere to be seen and the bar was empty, so he went upstairs to search for me in the Sanctuary, but I wasn't there either. Returning to the Catecombs once more, he finally found me in a dark corner with the man I'd been dancing with. At first he thought that we were making out, but then he saw that we were involved in grave discussion, as sombre as if we were discussing a death. The man held my wrist in one hand and the nape of my neck in the other, and while we appeared to be engaged in conversation, no sounds were emerging from our moving lips. As soon as the man saw Andre, he released his grip and turning, made some sarcastic asides towards my lover and then turned his attention back to me. Andre felt an intense desire to leave- an undefinable urge which he later insisted was not jealousy. As he passed by me, I plucked blindly at his sleeve but didn't meet his eyes. Andre left- it was only after he had crossed the park and was half way home that he realized he hadn't informed me he was leaving.

All I remember of what had passed after hearing The Voice was my own, agitated, repeating-- "You're going to get me into trouble...", but with whom or for what I wasn't entirely certain.

Consciousness finally surfaced enough for me to break away, and I left and went in search of my lover, who'd fallen into a deep, deep sleep and did not awaken until the following afternoon.

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NOTE: All images and text on this site are protected under International copyright laws.
Linda Dawn Hammond, 2003.

Inquiries regarding current and future exhibitions and purchase orders of this series and others can be made at the following Email Address:


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DEATH , The WHEEL , The FOOL , The Magician, The High Priestess , Lovers , The Sage, The Sacrifice, PAN , The TOWER , The STAR , The Moon, The SUN , Resurrection and The World.


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