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Tea and poetry- a timeless pairing

A book is the perfect companion for tea. Scratch that. On seconds thoughts poetry is the perfect companion for tea. Poems make you feel like smiling just as much as tea makes you happy. The best examples can be found in Japanese forms of poetry and how it blends well with Japanese tea. Harmony, respect, tranquility, and purity make an inspirational infusion that can be witnessed in the serving of tea and poetry performance in Japan. Waka is a distinctive type of Japanese poetry. Over the years many other styles have evolved which includes chōka, tanka, renga, haikai, renku and hokku. The most significant one has been Haiku.

Haiku is one of the most popular types of Japanese poems which has received global acclaim. It was derived from the words Haikai and Hokku, by Japanese poet Masaoka Shik in the 19th century. A Haiku consists of 17 syllables in total and is framed in three lines, usually in a 5-7-5 format. A Haiku is non-rhyming but has become successful for the metaphors and imagery that capture the emotions of the season. As Japanese alphabets are similar to pictograms, this heightens the beauty of poems such as Haiku. In fact, poets and painters would often come together to create anthologies that were fit to entertain aristocrats and royalty. Here is our attempt at a basic Haiku verse: 

Tea inspires us lots

Every kind is delicious

Black white green Oolong

It is interesting to study how poetry became ingrained in Japanese culture. It was often used as a means of communication, in letters and performed along with music and dance. This is best highlighted in a Japanese tea ceremony, where you will find scrolls on the wall showcasing wisdom through poetry. Poems are also recited to guests during the ceremony while enjoying a healthy bowl of Matcha.

 If you’re feeling creative after reading this article, maybe you can craft a Haiku poem of your own, while sipping on a cup of Matcha. Not tried Matcha before? Our Matcha is sourced from the Nishio region, Aichi prefecture in Japan. It has been handpicked by our tea sommelier to suit the Indian palate. Mint Matcha is our new refreshing flavour. Click here to sample our Matcha and brewing kits.

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