1. Breakfast


Q.1.     Describe the writer’s meeting with the laborers. What did they offer him as breakfast? Give the summary of Breakfast.


This story gives a vivid description of the passions and feelings of a poor and God-fearing American laboring family encamped in a valley for twelve days for cotton-picking. One cold morning, while traveling in a valley, the writer came across a tent beside which a rusty iron stove was burning. He saw a young woman frying bacon and baking bread. In her arms she was carrying a baby that was sucking her. She was dressed in a faded cotton skirt and waist. Her hair was tied back with a string. A young and an old man came out of the tent. They seemed to be father and son. Their hands and faces were wet with water. They sat beside the stove to warm up their hands. They bade the writer good morning and offered him to have breakfast with them. The writer was already attracted by the smell of frying bacon and baking bread. He, therefore, sat with them. Then they began to talk. They told the writer that they had got twelve days’ work of cotton-picking and “they even got new clothes.” Their breakfast consisted of bacon, biscuits, bacon gravy and coffee. The old man took it with relish. He chewed and swallowed. He thanked God that it was good. The young man thanked God that they had been eating food for twelve days. After breakfast, they stood up to go for cotton-picking and invited the writer to accompany them. But he left with a pleasant impression and memory.


  1. 2. Breakfast is a story in which the purity of living is described.” Discuss.

Or        The story depicts the beauty and simplicity of God-fearing people.    Discuss.

Or        “The writer portrays the acute poverty and self-sufficiency of seasonal laborers.” Illustrate. Does the story convey a moral lesson?  

Or       The story gives us a glimpse of the free, happy and peaceful life of cotton-           

pickers. Do you agree?


The story presents a poor family of seasonal laborers who live upon cotton-picking. They have no complaint or grudge against any person for their poverty. They thank God who has given them good food for twelve days at least. It shows their simple living, God-fearing nature and self-sufficiency. It throws light on the contentment of those who thank God under all circumstances. This is also the moral of the story.

The poor family comprised four members: a young man, an old man, a young lady and a baby. They were dressed in simple cotton clothes. They had put up a tent in a valley surrounded by mountains. They had got twelve days’ work of cotton-picking, during which they would get new clothes and free food. They were thankful to God for providing them good food and good clothes for at least twelve days. The young woman was cooking breakfast on a rusty iron stove before the tent. The sucking baby was in her arms. She was frying bacon and cooking bread. There was no expensive crockery in the tent. She set a platter of bacon, a bowl of bacon gravy, a pot of coffee, tin cups, tin plates, knives and forks etc. Their dress and their utensils spoke of thin simple living. They were content with their lot, with whatever God had provided them.

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