Like food, literature omnipresent in all our lives: Maria Goretti

Actress, dietician, poet and hobby runner Maria Goretti wears many hats. An Indian MTV VJ, she has hosted several TV shows including Do It Sweet on the NDTV Good Times channel and I Love Cooking on Living Foodz. Besides writing the immensely popular cookbook, From My Kitchen to Yours: Food, Love & Other Ingredients, she has recently published a collection of 40 beautiful poems on “life, love and everything in-between”. It is titled To the Moon and Back. In a conversation with Sucheta Dasgupta, Goretti finds similarities between her passion for food and that for poetry. Just like food, there is a bit of literature in everyone’s lives, she tells her interviewer.

Food and poetry are two distinct themes in your literary life. What do you think is the connection between them?

I think both are driven from passion, for me. And both, for me, are a natural extension of your spirit. And when I say that I mean none of us can exist without literature. There is a little bit of literature in everyone’s life.

Your collection of poems is titled To the Moon and Back. What is the significance of the moon in your poems?

I love the moon. And my kids. For instance, I keep telling my son I love you to the moon and back. So when I compiled my collection, it was a pretty natural title to the book.

Aside from the moon, what are the objects that you write about in your poetry?

I write about life and love, and everything in-between. I don’t really dwell on objects. But I love nature. If you put me in a forest, I feel at home. Maybe part of it is inherent. My grandparents were farmers. I spent my childhood running across fields, swimming in wells and climbing trees.

What inspired your volume of poems?

I have been writing poetry since 2011. The year 2017 was when my editor Deepa who was with Om Books said, why don’t you send over what you have been writing? And by the time I compiled all of it there were a hundred pieces. And I spent lots and lots of time editing. And it went into print. So it was not planned beforehand.

The first poem I wrote was called ‘The Lamp’. Each of us has a little lamp inside of us which helps us move forward when in a crisis. That was the beginning, and after that, the poems just poured out of me.

What is your favourite recipe, and why is it your favourite?

My favourite dish is a simple aglio olio peperoncino because I totally love pasta and it is my favourite pasta. It is really easy to make. But aside of that it is the regular dal-chawal that I enjoy.

Do you think Indians should switch to soups and salads or stick to their traditional cereal- and wok-based diet?

Food is extremely personal. It is as personal as religion and politics. I think the food produced off the land is the best because your carbon footprint is less, the food is fresher and what actually grows in that soil and climate is good for our health because we live in that climate. So whenever people ask me, what should I eat to be as fit as you(?), I say I eat everything. I enjoy vegetarian meals, but I also enjoy a good steak. Everybody’s constitution is different. One size doesn’t fit all.

What are you looking forward to with regard to the JLF? What do you hope will be your takeaway from the festival?

I am looking to meet people, interact with my readers and listen to my favourite authors. It will be a joyful experience.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
Next Story