Sunday, July 21, 2013

Blood on the Wire, by Carolyn Wilkinson

This is a rich, deep and at times very troubled story about the relationship between a convicted murder (Daniel Heiss) and an astrologer (Carolyn Wilkinson) – the author. There was much about the book that captured my attention. I actually enjoyed reading all the prison stories, whilst many shocked me, I realised how naive I am about prison life. I enjoyed the developing relationship between Carolyn and Daniel and how she offered him hope, faith and growth through encouragement and love. She also took him seriously – wonderful gifts to offer another human being. I interpreted the prison system takes these things away.

I found the astrology side of the book interesting and reflective, I was fascinated by Carolyn’s offerings and insights to Daniel, however as these insights did not relate directly to me (or maybe they did) at times I got lost in Daniel's letters and found I was more drawn to Carolyn’s letters and the prison stories. I think part of me felt I should not be reading them, because Daniel was sharing deep things about himself…I felt like a ‘voyeur’.

On another theme I too struggle to remember to breathe when under pressure so I could relate to Carolyn’s constant reminders. I enjoyed her words of encouragement about self-growth, negative thoughts and not reacting to events. Or if you do react, do it from a resourceful space.

Carolyn is for me an interesting women and I am glad I stopped and bought her book at the Parap Markets in the Northern Territory. Carolyn insisted on us taking a picture and we choose the Leopard, which keeps drawing me in – his eyes are so deep. At the time I could not understand the significance of the pictures. Daniel's art is a rich theme throughout the book.

Coaching (my frame of reference) is another thing I took from the book. Whilst Carolyn doesn’t use the term, my sense is that much of what she offered Daniel through her letters was done using a coaching approach – deep listening, questions, intuition and the invitation for him to solve his own problems.  Which he did, he was able to overcome all the adversity and lead ‘himself’ from within an actual prison.  If you want to read a true and thrilling story about human endurance and how to lead from within self, read this book.

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