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Poetry Canadian

A New Index for Predicting Catastrophes

by (author) Madhur Anand

McClelland & Stewart
Initial publish date
Apr 2015
Canadian, Women Authors, Nature
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2015
    List Price

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A striking poetic debut that brilliantly illuminates and celebrates the intersection of poetry and science, and the ways they can mediate our discovery of the world and our place in it.
     Originating from her living room, backyard garden, university office, or the field sites in boreal or tropical forests, the poems in Madhur Anand’s captivating debut collection compose a lyric science; they bring order and chaos together into a unified theory of predicting catastrophes, large and small. Anand’s ecologist poetics are sophisticated and original; her voice is an “index,” a way of cataloguing and measuring the world and human experience, and of illuminating the interconnectedness at the heart of all things. Narrating the beauty of her perceived world, the poems unabashedly embrace the scintillant language of scientific evidence as they interrogate crises of personal and global concern. The result is a poetry that is as complex as it is compassionate. Anand’s modernist intervention into “nature” poetry is a sparkling addition to poetics in Canada and beyond.

About the author

Madhur Anand's poetry has appeared in several literary magazines across Canada and the US including The Malahat Review, Grain, CV2, The New Quarterly, Interim and Room. Her poetry has also been anthologized in The Shape of Form: Creative Writing about Science and Mathematics and nominated for a Pushcart prize. Formerly a professor at Laurentian University in Sudbury, she now holds the Canada Research Chair in Global Ecological Change at the University of Guelph. Her award-winning research in the areas of ecological modelling, forest ecology, and conservation ecology has been widely published in several leading international journals. She serves on the editorial board of Community Ecology, Research Letters in Ecology and the Open Conservation Biology journal.

Madhur Anand's profile page


  • Short-listed, Trillium Book Award

Editorial Reviews

“In Madhur Anand’s poems the ancient false dichotomy between art and science collapses, and does so with such grace, wit, and élan you’d think this had been its purpose all along. These poems are alive with the potency of their own hybrid attentions – rapt, nimble, and capable of unlocking the energies asleep in eco-scientific jargon as well as popular culture and the poet’s Indian heritage. Here is a writing full of linguistic and conceptual verve, essential reading for all of us interested in poetry and the ecological arts.” --Don McKay, Griffin Poetry Prize–winning author of Strike/Slip

"Anand's exquisitely crafted debut poetry collection combines scientific, observational, socially conscious, haunting and reflexively personal, and almost Romantic strains into a cohesive, captivating whole. . . . [A] seemingly effortless, deeply humanist sleight of hand. . . . Anand's attention to and ability to evoke explicit, exponential beauty in scientific and natural form are simply stunning. . . . Anand's debut is in every measure a triumph." --Publisher's Weekly