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Drawing of breadfruit by John Frederick Miller

Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis) is a species of flowering tree in the mulberry family, Moraceae originating in the South Pacific and that was eventually spread to the rest of Oceania.


  • Boys dream of native girls who bring breadfruit,
    Whatever they are,
    As bribes to teach them how to execute
    Sixteen sexual positions on the sand;
    This makes them join (the boys) the tennis club,
    Jive at the Mecca, use deodorants, and
    On Saturdays squire ex-schoolgirls to the pub
    By private car.

    Such uncorrected visions end in church
    Or registrar:
    A mortgaged semi- with a silver birch;
    Nippers; the widowed mum; having to scheme
    With money; illness; age. So absolute
    Maturity falls, when old men sit and dream
    Of naked native girls who bring breadfruit
    Whatever they are.

    • Philip Larkin, "Breadfruit," in: Neil Powell (1980). Carpenters of Light: Some Contemporary English Poets. p. 100

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