Rosemary Nissen-Wade: Aussie poet and teacher of metaphysics – a personal view
My bestie nicknamed me SnakyPoet on her blog, and I liked it. (It began as
'the poet of the serpentine Northern Rivers' and became more and more abbreviated.)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Joys of Losing Weight

Delightful things people have said to me lately

Friend who brought me flowers on my birthday: ‘I can tell when I hug you that you’ve lost about four inches around your waist.’

Colleague encountered at the movies: ‘You’re looking good, Rosemary. Something’s working!’

Letitia, film director, during phone-call: ‘It really shows in the pictures from the latest filming. You’ve lost heaps!’

Conversations which amuse me –

Neighbour, in our shared driveway: ‘You’re on a diet?’
Me: ‘No.’
Neighbour: ‘Oh, are you just being careful what you eat?’
Me: 'No, not at all. I eat what I like.’

Husband, at home yesterday: ‘I can’t understand how you’re losing so much weight! You’re eating like a horse.’
Me: ‘Well you know I’m not allowed to tell you. But you live with me – you must be able to see what I’m doing.’
Husband: ‘Nothing! It’s a mystery.’

Other things I’m not doing –

Just for the record, Husband is wrong; I am of course doing something. I’m doing Letitia’s program, with the consent of my doctor. And yes, I have signed a contract not to reveal the details. You’ll all have to wait until the film is released.

However, I do have permission to tell you what I’m not doing – besides not dieting.

I’m not cutting out fat; I’m not even cutting it down.

I haven’t lowered my sugar intake. (It wasn’t all that high to start with, but I do indulge in cakes, biscuits and chocolate whenever I feel like it.)

I’m not doing any strenuous exercise.

I’m not taking any appetite suppressants, diuretics, or ‘speedy’ chemicals.

I’m not using dietary supplements.

I haven’t been hypnotised.

Pleasant surprises –

A month ago I bought some new slacks. I got them from the op shop because I knew I’d be growing out of them fairly soon. It was a lot sooner than I thought! Within a week they had gone from a perfect fit to being rather loose. By now, the waistband sags about three inches below my navel.

I fit back into the black satin pants my friend Pam gave me, which I haven’t worn for nearly two years.

Today I had to do up my bra on the second row of hooks.

(If you're desperate for clues, check Letitia's thinkin trim taut terrific website.)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Apology Received

Dear USA (and its representatives here) -

I acknowledge receipt of the following in my inbox this morning.

Dear World,

The United States of America, your quality supplier of ideals of liberty and democracy, would like to apologize for its 2001-2008 service outage.

The technical fault that led to this eight-year service interruption has been located, and the parts responsible for it were replaced Tuesday night, November 4. Early tests of the newly installed equipment indicate that it is functioning correctly, and we expect it to be fully functional by mid-January.

We apologize for any inconvenience caused by the outage, and we look forward to resuming full service --- and hopefully even to improving it in years to come.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

I am thankful!

SnakyPoet representing the World

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Coming Out for Equality

This email just received from GetUp is worth celebrating!

Dear Rosemary,

Last night the Senate passed historic legislation removing outdated discrimination against same s-x* couples in scores of laws ranging from tax, superannuation and Medicare to social security, health, aged care and employment.

You joined over 53,000 GetUp members on the petition calling for an end to this unfair discrimination and were at the forefront of demonstrating to our politicians that now is the time for equal rights.


The passing of this long overdue legislation marks years of campaigning to end discrimination against same s-x couples. Congratulations are due to the many organisations and individuals like you who campaigned to end this discrimination.

Only when we can demonstrate that the community's attitudes are out of step with our laws will our politicians follow - and you were an integral part of that process.

Thanks for working towards a progressive Australia,

The GetUp team

* Please note - the "e" in this word has been removed to avoid spam email filters.

GetUp is an independent, not-for-profit community campaigning group. We use new technology to empower Australians to have their say on important national issues. We receive no political party or government funding, and every campaign we run is entirely supported by voluntary donations. If you'd like to contribute to help fund GetUp's work, please donate now! If you have trouble with any links in this email, please go directly to

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Calling all my Aussie mates

Just thought I'd pass on the email I got from GetUp today – to urge you on! :)

Thanks for taking action

Dear Rosemary,

Thanks for taking action to end the Bush-Howard era of national security - finally this is the moment we've waiting for to end draconian features of our anti-terror laws that have brought widespread condemnation and done little to actually protect us.

This moment may not come again any time soon - please take a moment to send this campaign to everyone you know, to counter those pundits whispering in our politicians' ears that they must be seen to be 'tough on terror'. Just forward the original email below.

The GetUp Team

--------- Original email to forward to your friends ---------

Dear friend,

Finally the moment we've been waiting for has come.

Yesterday Barack Obama vowed one of his first acts will be closing Guantanamo Bay. This week our Government will receive a report into the bungled Dr Haneef fiasco and the Opposition have joined with the Greens to call for an independent watchdog - this is our chance to demand a new era of national security that protects both Australia and the rights of all Australians.

It's time we make sure no Australian can be detained without charge, without legal representation and without access to the evidence against them. Without clear statements from the community, politicians will again err on the side of appearing tough at the expense of just and effective laws.

Sign our petition for an independent review of our anti-terrorism laws and a watchdog to monitor their use and necessity.

Sedition, preventative detention, control orders, evidence obtained by torture, extraordinary rendition - as the world moves on from the Bush-Howard era of draconian anti-terror laws, Australia can't be left behind.

Governments have a responsibility to keep the community safe. But our law books contain 44 extraordinarily harsh laws that erode our human rights, offend the rule of law, and grant our authorities immense power with little scrutiny.

The best way to protect the community is to make sure our authorities operate under clear, transparent and just guidelines that ensure the best outcomes are gained by upholding legal principles. Sign our petition calling for an independent review and watchdog to make sure our anti-terror laws protect us and our rights.

Three years ago, GetUp members rallied against some of the most unnecessary and harsh measures ever introduced into Australian law. Now the same party that introduced these laws agrees that we "cannot allow extraordinary measures to become ordinary". 1

Join the growing chorus of voices calling for a new era of national security that keeps us and our democratic freedoms safe.

History will remember the Bush-Howard era of national security as one marked by draconian anti-terrorism laws that did little to protect us but created a politically-useful climate of fear. With the end of that era, we now have a chance to write a new chapter.

Here's to the future,
The GetUp team

PS - Many of our anti-terror laws do more harm than good, and do little to make Australia safe. Click the petition link above to show your support for the reform of the Bush-Howard era anti-terror laws.

1 Shadow Attorney-General, Senator the Hon George Brandis in this article

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Best Thing I've Heard in Years!

I don't know how to get this video onto this blog - but you can access it here.

Please, please, everybody, do!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I Just Became an Honorary Gay

My friend Collin Kelley, Atlanta poet, playwright and journalist (whom I met in Texas in 2006 at the Austin International Poetry Festival) just bestowed this honour on me. And yes, I’m serious, it is an honour!

Following the global jubilation and relief at Barak Obama’s election, many were disappointed at the passing of Proposition 8 which declares that legal marriage can only be between a man and a woman, effectively banning gay marriages, which had been happening in the State of California. Whilst a State issue, it obviously has much wider implications.

Collin blogged about this disappointment, I wrote a comment in support and signed it Heterosexual Unafraid of Gays. I adopted this moniker 20 years ago when my son David started at university. On Orientation Day he encountered a club for gays, which also had badges for heterosexual well-wishers.

(This is twice as big as actual size.)

HUG, they explained, is an acronym for Heterosexual Unafraid of Gays. And wearing it can create an opportunity for conversations about that! When I saw David’s badge I requested one for myself too, and I still treasure it.

I think I might start wearing it more often. As an honorary gay, I think this privilege also carries responsibilities!

In Australia too, there is urgent need for reform. While it hasn’t been put to the popular vote, our politicians have so far refused to legalise gay marriage.

Good on you Collin for blogging about it, getting people thinking and reminding this person of her principles. The first (though not the only) thing to do about injustice is to speak up!

Post-script: The badge is now in my sidebar with a link to this post, as a way of raising awareness of this issue. Click on the "gay rights" tag to see more posts on the subject. This one is particularly pertinent.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

TEXAS POETRY TOUR: Workshop at Ventana del Soul

On April 17th (2006) I emailed Andrew:

Dearest A

Here is my latest gig report:

Last night I presented a writing workshop at a place called Ventana del Soul. Several of the people who turned up for it were in their twenties, there was one young, shy girl in her teens (a definite Indigo child, rather similar to X in energy though not so brash and wild), and a few somewhat older women.

Thom was in charge – well I was, but he was hosting it. And the three lovely young men who run the cafĂ© that sends bagels to the homeless were there too. Some of the youngsters were poets I heard at the Hideout, that very energetic venue I enjoyed so much.

Well, we had great fun! This was not an occasion for The Dress; I turned up in a cherry red Forrest Fest t-shirt received from Connie since coming here ... not that it would have mattered what I wore. Thom had told me to trot out lots of exercises, everything I knew. I didn't quite include everything in only 2 hours, but we did lots. It was joyous and deep and magickal and hilarious. People wrote all sorts of great stuff and were thrilled with what they got. Raw material for lots of new poems! Many pieces were already poems. I incorporated some of the stuff I'd done the day before at Interplay, slightly altered for a writing context. Everyone hugged me goodbye and gave me lots of thanks. Some who couldn't get there till late because of work and things were very sorry after the event to have missed any of it.

A, who is the mother of the Indigo girl, thanked me for helping her daughter to express herself. The girl did have difficulty at first, but ended up sharing much of what she wrote (in the most beautiful, naturally husky voice).

I sold one book and got $6 in my tip jar. Just as well I am having such a ball! And being looked after in terms of food, transport and accommodation by generous hosts. When I exclaimed to Thom about people's generosity, he said, 'Well, you're our guest. And it's a measure of who you are. People like you.' He added that these will be friends for life; I already know that. He said he's met here the nicest, best people anywhere, and I can believe him (though I myself do know some pretty good ones at home too!).

Since leaving for Texas I have been able to be very much in the moment most of the time. It's interesting. I think that accounts for a lot of my success and the warm encounters.

This afternoon I am participating as her guest in a workshop Dorsey is running on Voice Dialogue. I think it will dovetail rather nicely with our Reiki II lessons which we finished yesterday.

And so the adventure continues. Thom reminds me there is still more to come! Though I am also starting to do the countdown to going home, being about at the halfway point right now.

Well, don't know how often I'll be able to do reports from now on; will do the best I can.

Time for breakfast now!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008


I think it's wonderful news - and I am impressed by McCain's magnificent concession speech almost as much as by Obama's inspiring acceptance speech.

Oh, may it indeed be the dawn of a new era!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Rejoicing in my Christian friends

I’m glad to say that a number of my Christian friends on MySpace, Live Journal and Blogger have assured me that not only were they not offended by my giggle at the ‘Christian Masturbation’ ad, they found it funny too. Some even suggested that God very likely has a sense of humour!

They also realised that the humour was in the absurdity of the suggestion that there’s a correct religious way to masturbate, and would have been just as funny whatever religion had been named.

The consensus is that they consider me a sensitive and loving person with whom they are glad to be friends. One, who happens to be a pastor’s wife, addressed me as ‘dearest sister’ – and it’s true that, apart from our respective ways of worship, we have everything in common. As for my post, she said her husband laughed at it too.

All of which has greatly restored my sense of perspective. Thanks, people!