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I’ve been reading some of my favorite poems out loud on Nepal Tea’s Instagram reels. I call the section Tea and Poetry. In this section, I let the tea of the day introduce me to poems I’ve long forgotten or sometimes discover new poems in itself.
Here I recommend you three poets to rummage through their collection while sipping on a delicious brew of Kathmandu Cosmos (also famously known as Kathmandu Cosmo tea according to our Google Analytics)
Why? Well, I’m tired of writing and reading about the medicinal physical benefits of tea. It’s not that the topic itself is boring. It’s that the benefits seem to be endless and even the possibilities.
So I am doing what I often do for my breaks- visit the poets. I wouldn’t call myself well-read, but my poetic pilgrimage often takes the shape of an irregular circle. I make the same old pitstop at the same old poems, only letting myself discover new poems once in a while.
This concoction reminds me of the city that I write from. It is jam-packed with delightful herbs and spices of different flavors, just like the city and the people it's named after. A little bit of warm water and each of the ingredients start to dance on my Wall Tea Cup.
When I notice one flavor over the other, an old memory visits me. The orange peel reminds me of the Kathmandu winter sun. Black cardamom reminds me of evening rooftop dances with cousins.
The experience itself becomes so full of beauty that I naturally try to find literary equivalents.
Hence I recommend the works of the following three poets while you sip on your Kathmandu Cosmos (also known as Kathmandu Cosmo by hundreds of you according to Google Analytics)
Warsan Shire is a Somali British writer and poet born in Nairobi and raised in London. She often writes about the immigrant and/or refugee experience prioritizing giving voices or what I like to think home to the unheard voices.
Andrea Gibson is an American poet and activist from Calais, Maine, who has lived in Boulder, Colorado since 1999. Their poetry focuses on gender norms, politics, social reform, and the struggles LGBTQ people face in today's society.
How can I recommend Kathmandu Cosmos and not mention a poet from Kathmandu? Itisha Giri is a poet and editor currently based in Madrid. Her poetry privileges social engagement but also deals with her personal struggle to make sense of her identities and the purpose they serve in different locations. She often asks the audience- primarily Nepali- what does it mean to be Nepali?