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.)
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Sunday, June 13, 2021

In Defence of MM

No, not Marilyn Monroe (who needs no defending now, having long been fully appreciated since her death) – but that more recent member of the acting profession, Meghan Markle.

Like Marilyn (of whom it was not widely known when she was alive, nor perhaps even now) the new MM is a writer. And what a writer!

When she edited an issue of VOGUE, I was curious enough to buy a copy. I had to get it imported into Australia to my local newsagent. It's not at all the sort of magazine I would normally buy, as an Age Pensioner with limited funds and no great interest in the dictates of fashion. But I thought Markle an interesting woman.

When she came to prominence as the future wife of Prince Harry, I researched her – unlike, apparently, the tabloid writers and assorted snobs and racists who thought she wasn't good enough to marry British royalty. It really wasn't difficult to find the facts!

She's a university graduate, she has worked for World Vision and addressed the United Nations on gender equality, and in her early days of trying to break into acting, she supported herself between gigs by freelance calligraphy and teaching book-binding. All of which stamps her as being both bookish and politically aware.

I've already written in detail at this blog on my impressions of that issue of VOGUE, focusing on her role as a guest editor. The thing I might also have stressed, and do emphasise now, is that it included several samples of her own writing, both in her Guest Editor's Letter and the introduction to her feature 'Forces for Change', which highlighted various women she sees as being such forces. I read them both of course and immediately thought, with pleasure, 'Oh, she's a writer!' An excellent writer, in fact.

Her moving article in THE NEW YORKER about her miscarriage confirms this. It's both uncompromisingly honest and beautifully crafted. 

In fact her very first claim to fame was due to a piece of writing: a letter she wrote at the age of 11 to a soap manufacturer, asking for a change to sexist language in their advertisement. It was effective! They changed the wording. And it still attests to both her ability with the written word and the genuineness of her progressive views.

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