In human chemistry, Mala Radhakrishnan (1978-) (CR=61) (SNE:11) is an American “physical chemistry professor and published chemistry poet” (Mindy Levin, 2011) or “chemistry professor and computational biophysical chemist” (self-described, Ѻ), noted for her 2003 Chemistry of the Couch Potato, twenty poems of which found there way into her 2011 collected works poetry chemistry book Atomic Romances, Molecular Dances, illustrated by American biochemist Mary O'Reilly, a collected set of 50 poems, written over a period of ten years, which employ a mix of poetry and easy-to-understand analogies, e.g. “Sex and the City” (television) to “Sex and Acidity” (poetry), to formulate what seems to be Empedocles-style / Dr. Seuss mix of poetically-rhymed chemistry aphorisms and humanized stories. [7] The following is an excerpt from Radhakrishnan’s book launch BBS interview (video below):

“When I think of chemistry, I always think of what are the atomsfeeling’ on a molecular and atomic level and in a lot of ways, the reactions that they experience are similar to the relationships that people experience.”

The poems where done, according to Radhakrishnan, in an effort to help students, particularly high school students, learn thermodynamics, kinetics, and molecular reactions in a more realistic manner, namely in the framework of subjects on the mind of the typically coming of age student, such as relationships, dating, and sex, etc.

On 8 Oct 2012, Radhakrishnan began tweeting two-line rhyming chemistry poem segments, the first of which is the following: (Ѻ)

“Hope you'll enjoy these chemical notions
Written as poetry in (Brownian?) motion ...”

As of 2 Jul 2014, Radhakrishnan has tweeted some 420+ tweets, the majority of which being of human chemistry, physicochemical humanities, and or poetry chemistry variety, having attracted some 480+ followers. Many of these tweets are dissected, discussed, and or ranked below, per interestingness, correctness, and or humor, depending.

In Jul, Aug, and Oct 2013, Radhakrishnan began chemistry-rhyming in tweet-communication with American chemist Shane Street, a chemistry professor at the University of Alabama (Ѻ), who goes by the Twitter handle @SCStreet. (Ѻ) Some of their dialogs are dissected below:

 Tweets Dissection / Discussion Parenthood is a happy mess -- /A negative dH and a positive dS.— Mala Radhakrishnan (2013), tweet 7:17 PM Jul 30 And the excess free energy flowsInto the children so they grow— Shane Street (2013), reply tweet 7:41 PM Jul 30 Ah, free energy -- that answers the question /Of how my son can be active with so little digestion.— Mala Radhakrishnan (2013), reply tweet 9:13 PM Jul 30 Little activated complexes, there's no questionThey run downhill in either direction! — Shane Street (2013), reply tweet 9:20 PM Jul 30 Well, now that I've given him his goodnight kiss, /My son sleeps in thermodynamic bliss!— Mala Radhakrishnan (2013), reply tweet 9:24 PM Jul 30

Tweeter: Atomic Romances | 2+ votes | Ranked
In 2012, Radhakrishnan began tweeting sections of her poetry, via her @AtomicRomances Tweeter account. The following is a work-in-progress ranking, per combined number of re-tweets and favorites, of Radhakrishnan's chemistry poetry tweets, from 8 Oct 2012 to Jun 2014, according to her 484 followers; those with equivalent number of total votes ranked in descending order of interestingness; the up/down arrows column give indication as to closeness of rhyming segment to reality (↑) as compared to distance away from (↓) a real description and hence more closer to analogy, metaphor, and or simile (↓): [8]

Tweeter: Atomic Romances | 1-vote | Ranked
The following is a work-in-progress ranking of Radhakrishnan's chemistry poetry tweets, with one favorite or re-tweet, semi-ordered via interestingness: [8]

Noteable / Interesting | Ruminate | No-votes
The following are a few interesting tweets, without actual votes, per se, but ones, nevertheless, to make note of, ranked according to interestingness, humorfulness, and or statements to be ruminated on:

Nonsensical | Analogy over-stretches | Off / Incorrect
The following are rhyming tweets, albeit ones without underlying correct logic structure:

The point, to note, in listing the above "incorrect" poetry segment rhymes, is for the sake of clarity. Incorrect statements, done in fun or pun, may often germinate and lead, in science in particular, to a proliferation of confusion; the classical 1939 John Neumann-Claude Shannon conversation about entropy, and the so-called Shannon bandwagon that followed, is the prime example. [9]

Free will
The following shows Radhakrishnan's probing tweets at the free will problem, as physical chemistry sees things, listed in in reverse chronological order, showing her getting closer to mark, i.e. correctness, as evidenced by more tweets, as time progresses, as she practices and improves on earlier tweets:

What if our free will is just an illusion, /
And everything happens through random diffusion?

Classical, quantum — both give me a chill, /
'Cause both do imply that I have no free will ...

What if our free will were just an illusion, /
Our "trajectories" laid out by steered diffusion?

Your choices to no one should e'er be subordinate, /
'Cause you should control your reaction coordinate!

Human chemical bonding
Radhakrishnan, in her aggregate Tweets, employs the concepts of: strong nuclear force, ionic bond, covalent bond, triple bonds, and the van der Waals force, each in various scenarios, as analogy models of the human chemical bond.

 Morally-neutral(legal) Immoral?(illegal) KF2 MF2 Left: the space-fill model of the molecule krypton difluoride (Ѻ), which, according to Radhakrishnan, is a happy atomic threesome, formed via covalent bonds; a legal bond according to the laws of chemistry. Right: an image of a Washington man married to two women, i.e. a trihumanide molecule, which is illegal under federal and state laws. (Ѻ) The so-called moral or ethical nature of marriage has recently been a topic of debate, particularly in regards to same sex marriage, many recoiling back to Biblical views to find their bearings. (Ѻ) To cite one recent position, arrived at by three scholars: (Ѻ)“We must guard against attempting to use ancient texts to regulate modern ethics and morals, especially those ancient texts whose endorsements of other social institutions, such as slavery, would be universally condemned today, even by the most adherent of Christians.”Here, Radhakrishnan would seem to concur and advocate for the use of the physical chemistry texts, over that ancient texts, to regulate modern ethics and morals, a position argued by Goethe some 200 years ago.

Morality
Radhakrishnan subtly touches on aspects of the implications of the physicochemical purview in regards to questions of human morality and social norms. The following are the last three stanzas from her "The Flirt and the Inert" poem:

Here we see Radhakrishnan touching on what is otherwise known as the Goethean revolution, namely the paradox between the rules of chemistry and the rules of humanity, which are inconsistent on many points, in regards to legality and morality. A man, e.g., can legally marry a woman, whereas, in most societies, polygamous or polyandrous societies aside, a man cannot marry two women legally nor can a woman marry two men legally. In chemistry, however, one krypton Kr atom can bond “blithely”, as Radhakrishnan puts it, to two fluorine F atoms to form krypton difluoride KF2, a bonding that “broke town convention”, as she says. This is quaint statement is reminiscent of Goethe’s late December 1809 famous defense statement, when attacked by a woman, about his physicochemical-social interaction theory (i.e. human chemical theory), as reported by Heinrich Laube (see: best book), namely that: “conventional moral norms can turn into sheer immorality when applied to situations of this character.” Town conventions and human-made rules, in short, are rooted, historically, in world religions, 75 percent of which are rooted in Anunian theology, and in turn the negative confessions (backbone to the ten commandments); subsequently, in the Bible, the morality go-to text for 33 percent of the world, we find 16+ proscriptions (Ѻ) about marriage, such as:

“It is good for a man not to marry. But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband.Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am.But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband.But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife.”

These types of god-based commandments, via comparison with Radhakrishnan poetry, as we see, do not corroborate. Either singlehood or a two-some is the only bound state or bond sanctioned as moral in the Bible. Likewise, once bonded, e.g. in matrimony, or in united as a dihumanide molecule, in hmolscience speak, or say in a dihydrogen molecule H2, the two “must not separate”, but if they do they must remain unmarried (unbonded). If, however, hydrogen breaks from its bond with hydrogen, it may very well bond with oxygen to form water H20, which is something proclaimed as “immoral” according the rules of the Bible, but not so according to the rules of chemistry, as Radhakrishnan points out.

This is what caused Goethe, in 29 Jan 1830 commentary to Carl Zelter, to gripe (see: Goethe timeline) about the inconsistencies between the ten commandments and rules and laws physical chemistry and how his Elective Affinities (1809) was themed on a dialectic about the sixth commandment (thou shall not commit adultery). The subtle implications of this correction to human thinking will invariably result in an “immense sweep of consequences [that] will affect the whole scope of morals and social order”, as American woman's rights activist Victoria Woodhull put it in 1871. As to when this moral revolution will actuate, is anybody’s guess? If, by comparison, it took 2,369-years for atomic theory to become accepted as fact (Leucippus’ circa 460BC introduction to Ostwald’s 1809 recant) and some 1,940-years to accept heliocentrism (Aristarchus’ circa 250BC proposal to Newton’s 1687 Principia), who is to say how long it will take for the acceptance of Goethe’s 1809 proposal to matriculate?

Poetry | Technique
The following is Radhakrishnan's poetry technique, from her Atomic Romances, Molecular Dances (2011), which she seems to employ paragraph after paragraph, namely to make the last words of of the first and second sentence, and third and fourth sentence, of each stanza rhyme:

This technique, to note, becomes rather tedious; by page 29 of her Atomic Romances, Molecular Dances, e.g., things begin to feel rather repetitive; though, once into the thermodynamics and kinetics poems, in pages 60-90, wherein the mind slows, as the blurry transition from analogy to realty ensues, the poems begin to flow better.
 An excerpt from Radhakrishnan’s poem “The Foiling Point of Water”, comparing the boiling points between methanol CH4O and water H2O, wherein one can sense the Dr. Suess flow of presentation. [6]

Discussion
Radhakrishnan gives descriptions of, for example, how “atoms and molecules fall in love and cheat on each other”, among other extrapolations, and or realisms, such how her poem "The Ion without a Name", about an ion who meets another ion on a bus, is similar to how she met her husband on a Greyhound bus. [3] In her poems, she seems to use a mix or blend of the extrapolate downward and the extrapolate upward approach; although more so, it seems, the former over the latter. In her own words: [5]

“I really try to humanize atoms and molecules”.

In this statement, to note, there is a bit of a backwards irony, in the sense that a human is in fact a molecule, at least according to the modern 21st century molecular formula or rather human molecular formula definition of things, and thus efforts to "humanize molecules", must be approached with a strong grain of salt, so that the humanization process does not become a game of incongruous charades or possibly false statements.

A few classic ventures down this path include: Dutch chemist and physician Herman Boerhaave stating that that force of affinity is “love, if love be the desire for marriage” (1732) and French chemist Jean Dumas commenting on this “there is some truth in Boerhaave's poetic comparison” (1837); speculating about the "feelings" (or not) of molecules in relation to each other's proximity (James Maxwell, 1878, in commentary on Carl von Nageli); speaking of “living and dead hydrogen atoms” (Albert Mathews, 1924); making assertions about the "free will", or lack there of, of molecules in respect to human molecules (C.G. Darwin, 1952), among others, each of which must be investigated in great detail, so that the entire presentation does not result to be a slipshod mess of agenda-based panpsychism (e.g. Christian de Quincey, 2002).

Someone who may well represent a sound middle ground in this approach is French engineer and chemical thermodynamicist Francois Massieu who in the 19th century compared humans to molecules, in their chemical composition, and then in this mindset addressed the puzzles as to how a molecule, such as water$H_2 0 \,$ (or by extension a human) can have a body and soul (in the scheme of water being split up into oxygen$O_2 \,$and hydrogen$H_2 \,$); or be alive vs dead; have morality, exist, and other philosophical issues. Modern approaches to these questions are well addressed in the the task of assigning chemical education homework problems to students to work out solutions on their own, although not without first giving some guidance of paths to avoid, as having traditionally being dead ends.

History
In circa 1998, Radhakrishnan wrote her first poem for an on-campus poetry reading, and the feedback was so good that she kept writing them, eventually becoming known in the Boston poetry scene, though typecast, she says with a laugh, as the ‘chemistry poet’.
 A comparative illustration of “dancing molecules” from English chemist Maxwell Eidinoff’s 1947 book Atomics for the Millions, in which, similar to Radhakrishnan, he employs analogy and or realism for illustrative teaching purposes. [4] Cover to Radhakrishnan's 2001 Atomic Romances, Molecular Dances which uses poetry and anthropomorphic chemistry illustrations to teach chemistry and physical chemistry concepts. [1]

In more detail, her parlay into poetry started when a friend invited her to an open mic poetry slam (when?), where she observed and became fascinated with what was going on. Although her first poems weren’t about chemistry, they eventually turned to this subject. Her first chemistry poem was “As the Magnetic Stir Bar Turns”, which she read at the open mic. One of her opens discusses the concept of a matchmaker as a human catalyst

Some of her other poem titles include: "Limiting Love", "The Flirt and the Inert", "Bridge Over Troubled H20", "The Radioactive Dating Game", and the "Amalgam in the Middle".

After completing her undergraduate degree at Harvard in 2000, in chemistry and physics, she spent several years teaching high school chemistry at San Jose, California, through the Teach for America program, during which time she began to employ the poetry teaching tactic to facilitate learning. After leaving San Jose to attend MIT, she continued to write scientific poems. When she realized that her poems could be educational, not just entertaining, she began choosing topics that students tend to struggle with, such as entropy and thermodynamics. [3] Her poems have since appeared in a textbook and in journals, to name a few: Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education, ChemInformation, Technology Review, and Tech Talk. [6]

Education
Radhakrishnan completed here AB in chemistry and physics at Harvard College in 2000 and her PhD in physical chemistry, with a dissertation on “Tackling the Bigger Picture in Computational Drug Design: Theory, Methods, and Applications to HIV-1 Protease and Erythropoietin Systems”, from MIT in 2007. Currently she is an assistant chemistry professor at Wellesley College, where her research interests are interdisciplinary, combining chemistry, physics, biology, applied mathematics, and computer science (computational modeling), with focus on understanding modeling of drug-receptor interactions (see: drug-receptor thermodynamics) at the molecular level. [2]

 ● Literature chemistry ● Literature thermodynamics ● Equation of love ● Barri Gold (ThermoPoetics, 2010)● Erich Muller (similar teaching style)● James Ferri (ChBE student-produced HT-applied video projects)● John Hodgson (Molecules Humans, 2002)● Johann Goethe (top ten greatest poets; Elective Affinities, 1809) ● “The Story of the Contented Molecule” (1941)● Primo Levi (The Periodic Table, 1975)

References
1. (a) Radhakrishnan, Mala. (2011). Atomic Romances, Molecular Dances (abs). LuLu.com.
(b) Marder, Jenny. (2011). “Drooling Electrons, Thermodynamics, and Beta Decay … in Verse.” PBS Newsroom, Science Thursday, Nov. 17.
2. Mala Radhakrishnan (profile) – Wellesley College.
3. Shay, Sara. (2011). “The Bard of Chemistry, Technology Review, Nov/Dec.
4. (a) Eidinoff, Maxwell L. and Ruchlis, Hyman. (1947). Atomics for the Millions. Whittlesey House.
(b) John. (2009). “Maurice Sendak’s first book was a science textbook”, Apr 06, SuperPunch, Blogspot.com.
(c) Dancing molecules (photo) – WeHeartIt.com.
(d) Anon. (2009). “Arts and Sciences”, Collecting Children’s Books, Mar 24, Blogspot.com.
5. Levine, Mindy. (2011). “Mala Radhakrishnan: an Interview”, Nesacs.org.
6. Filosa, Michael P. (2011). “Book Review: Atomic Romances, Molecular Dances Chemistry Poetry by Mala L. Radhakrishnan”, Nucleus, Oct.
7. Levine, Mindy. (c.2011). “Dr. Mala L. Radhakrishnan: an Interview”, The Northeastern Section of the American Chemical Society.
(b) Note: a few of the more non-interesting, and or non-chemistry based , e.g. “adjusting to two kids can seem problematic / ('cause stress vs. number of kids is quadratic!).” [3 favs], are not included in the rankings.
9. Thims, Libb. (2012). “Thermodynamics ≠ Information Theory: Science’s Greatest Sokal Affair” (url), Journal of Human Thermodynamics, 8(1): 1-120, Dec 19.
10. Thims, Libb. (2007). Human Chemistry (Volume One) (resonance, pgs. 241-43). Morrisville, NC: LuLu.
11. Fogler, H. Scott. (1992). Elements of Chemical Reaction Engineering (catalyst, pg. 242). Prentice Hall.

● McCarty, Eric P. (2003). Dancing Molecules: An Intimate Dance with the Divine (poem: Dancing Molecules, pg. 21). iUniverse.
● Heinemann, Lynn. (2005). “Q&A: Graduate Student Experiments, Discovers Poetry in Chemistry”, MIT News, Mar 30.
● Sargent, Ted. (2006). The Dance of Molecules: How Nanotechnology is Changing our Lives. Thunder’s Mouth Press.

Mala Radhakrishnan (directory) – Wellesley College.
Radhakrishnan, Mala Lakshmi – WorldCat Identities.
Amalgam in the Middle (2005) – TechnologyReview.com.
Chem poetry – OreillyScienceArt.com.