Madhur Anand is a poet and a professor of ecology and environmental science at the University of Guelph in Ontario – her work has been noted here in earlier postings in this blog -- and today I want to introduce readers to her memoir, This Red Line Goes Straight to Your Heart (Penguin Random House, 2020).
On the opening page we find these poetic lines:
Biexponential Function by Madhur Anand
I have of a
book from my
childhood is one
entitled I Know What
I Like. I remember the
glossy, Dubble Bubble-pink
hardcover, borrowed from the
library at Rockford Public
School. I can recite the first page, no
doubt because of the symmetry, or
rather, more so because of the symmetry-
breaking of the title, the shift from the I to
the You: I know what I like. / Do you know
what you like? As a child of two colliding cultures,
I knew that I did not know what I liked. Yet, at that
very young age of perhaps six or seven, I realized that
the major goal in life, in my life, was to be able to find
the answer to that question. To find out what I liked . . .
Anand has said that she was pushed to write the book by her desire to better understand her past – her parent’s experiences in India during the partition of British India in the 1940s and, later, during their years in Canada. The memoir is in two parts; in one she has tried to walk in their shoes and, in a second part, her story continues theirs. Her mentions of science and mathematics and poetry throughout the memoir add additional enriching layers. Here is a link to a preview of this very special book.