Friday, 20 January 2012


Someone on Twitter mentioned Larkin and sent me on a search, which revealed this poem I didn't know before. I like it because... well I'll let it speak for itself. It's not cynical, it's just insightful.


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.


  1. Tragically, Bangkok is packed with middle-aged white men who think they can sidestep absolute maturity and have one more go at the breadfruit dream. Poor, silly bastards.

  2. Tim, right. I guess when he wrote this he never dreamed there would be cheap package deals to Thailand to make it seem within reach.