The Soul's Friend

  I’m extremely lucky to be working with a young woman who does everything I’m unable to do – things such as social media, formatting of books for publication, the making of banners, posters, and bookmarks. Someone I can bounce off my many ideas which I can extrapolate upon in either my books or my blogs. This week we had a wonderful conversation about how easy it is for the two of us (and maybe women in general) to give compliments to others but fail to regularly give compliments to ourselves or, even worse, accept other people’s compliments. It’s as if we have an unfriendly relationship with yours truly.


And now with the New Year upon us, I find myself once again making ridiculous demands on myself to write dozens of books within a year’s time, to stretch my daily word count quota to some outrageous number that only Wonder Woman or a chronic insomniac can achieve, and to do all this while walking for hours on a treadmill while dictating myself into a stupor. Clearly, I have an inner voice—a negativity sargeant who’s always on my butt to do more and sleep less.

I think what is needed for all of us, not just myself, is a stronger internal Friend who tells me that I am loved, whether I write 300 or 3,000 words a sitting. Tthat I can write as many or as few books as I desire, as long as they truly represent my skill and talent as a writer. And that I can call myself an author, no matter how large or how small my royalty check.

My intention for 2019 is to continue to complement friends, family, and colleagues. More importantly, I intend to complement myself every chance I get. To once again fall in love with myself, not in an egotistical way, but in a manner which gives honor to my Creator, my parents and ancestors, and all those experiences and imaginings that have constituted the person whom I call me.

I think out of this will come a deeper way of living and experiencing the world in which I live. I don’t want to be lured away from this love I have of living, writing, teaching, and involving myself in the theatre. I want to stay “close to my bag.” I want to recognize at all times “the call of my souls friend.” By the way, nice blog Gwen!


The Soul’s Friend by Rumi, translated by Coleman Barks


Listen to your essential self, the Friend.

When you feel longing, be patient,

and also prudent, moderate with eating and drinking.



Be like a mountain in the wind.

Do you notice how little it moves?


There are sweet illusions that arrive

to lure you away. Make some excuse to them.

I have indigestion, or I need to meet my cousin.


You fish, the baited hook may be fifty

or even sixty gold pieces, but is it really worth

your freedom in the ocean?


When traveling, stay close to your bag.

I am the bag that holds what you love.

You can be separated from me.


Live carefully in the joy of this friendship.

Don't think, But those others love me too.


Some invitations sound like the fowler's whistle

to the quail, friendly,

but not quite how you remember

the call of your soul's Friend.

Gwen Overland