In the annals of the Culture Wars, the Battle of the Mango is going to prove an instructive moment. If you haven’t caught up with it yet, be prepared to plunge into something you thought you’d never have to do again: year 12 exam poetry interpretation, for thereby hangs a tale …

For their English exam, New South Wales year 12 HSC students were set a number of possible poems that might come up on the exam, including short lyrics by Yeats, Auden, and a piece by young Australian poet Ellen van Neerven called Mango, which is about an eight-year-old girl going down to the dam, where the boys are, and various things happening. Spoiler alert: in this poem, mangoes aren’t just mangoes.