Tear Water Tea

Steele Roberts, 2013

A baby grows from a poppyseed, a lizard is chased into dust. Remembering grandparents, dreaming of houses, contemplating nature and the nature of contemplation. This is the stuff of Tear Water Tea.

Including a series of pointillist drawings by David Randall Peters, who also designed the cover.


“There is a slowness to Koirala’s poetry, and kind of demonstration or exemplification of the contemplative nature of her subject matter. Her use and manipulation of language invites us into her pace of seeing things, albeit with a shy and timid hand.” Lynley Edmeades for Landfall Review

“The reader, too, has a feeling of joy reading Koirala’s bouquet of language that she plucks from common discourse, arranging words through metaphors and juxtapositions into such startling perceptions…” Patricia Prime for Takahe Magazine

“This is a beautiful collection of poems. Koirala has that knack of creating depth with a simple few lines – she creates images that seem to arise without effort, ideas that quietly lift off the page to settle in the mind of the reader, resonating long after you close the pages. These are sensitive, thoughtful, well-crafted poems that make you stop, slow down and read with pleasure.”
Stella Chrysostomou, Page & Blackmore Booksellers, Nelson.

“Descriptive, child-focused but never childish, this is a sumptuous book.”
Siobhan Harvey reviewed Tear Water Tea for Beattie’s Book Blog

“Poetry can take many forms and employ language in a thousand ways, but there is something immeasurably satisfying about small poems that are economical, graceful, mysterious”
Paula Green reviewed Tear Water Tea here

“I recently finished Tear Water Tea and loved it – it’s among my favourite poetry collections of the past few years. I very much admire the aptness and precision of the word choices Saradha makes in her poems: that was already evident in her first collection,Wit of the Staircase, and in her new collection it’s coupled with a wider and more ambitious range of subject matter. Plus, the book’s design is beautiful!”
Tim Jones interviewed Saradha about Tear Water Tea. You can read it here.

“Zen aficionados might urge us to just live in the moment but Saradha’s poetry suggests that an appreciation of our own experience is not immediately apparent but rather requires memory, reflection, perhaps even the act of writing, to make sense.  Saradha’s work is both personal and thoughtful—there’s much to discover with each reading.”
Harvey Molloy for Tuesday Poem

Poems from Tea Water Tea:

“At Ninety” and “Mise-en-scene” at A Place for Tulsi

“Tika” on Tuesday Poem Blog, with commentary from Harvey Molloy

“Gravity” in Hue & Cry – Issue 06

“The cat teaches me about death” in Hue & Cry – Issue 05

“And now” in New Zealand Listener 21st May

“Portrait” in broadsheet nz 7

“Retreating” and “Butterflies from moths” in Hue & Cry – Issue 04

“Echolalia” in Moments in the Whirlwind, NZPS

“New Year’s Resolution” at Books in the Trees

“Hinged” at Gurgle Words

“A secret I don’t mind you knowing” at Tim Jones’ Books in the Trees

“Tassel” at Mary McCallum’s blog

“The News” at Helen Rickerby’s blog