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Posted by on Oct 7, 2009 in Life, TheOnlyCin, Writing | 5 comments

HISTORY

Robert & Kathleen Scott

Robert & Kathleen Scott

CAPTAIN ROBERT SCOTT REMEMBERS SUMMER

Oates has gone now,

I am just going outside and may be some time

he said; bloody stubborn fellow!

But we’ve moved on and here we are,

to wait;

Wilson, Bowers and me.

God! This is an awful place.

Snowblindness shuts my eyes.

Ah, here’s Kathleen laughing,

gay and clever in a green dress

at the kitchen table:

I’m not jealous in the least

about your chilly expedition!

Her arms are smudged by summer’s sun,

and through the open window,

is England showing off.

I drift into the garden,

to my hammock,

for a nap,

I have no regrets

©Cindy Taylor 2009

The lines in italic are adapted from Captain Scott’s diary of his fateful expedition.

NOTES ON KATHLEEN SCOTT

Source: Wikipedia

Kathleen Scott, Baroness Kennet FRSBS (27 March 1878–25 July 1947) was a British sculptor.  Born Edith Agnes Kathleen Bruce at Carlton-in-Lindrick, Bassetlaw, Nottinghamshire, she was the youngest of eleven children of Canon Lloyd Stuart Bruce (1829–1886) and Jane Skene (d. 1880).  She attended the Slade School of Fine Art, London from 1900 to 1902, and then enrolled at the Académie Colarossi in Paris from 1902 to 1906 and was befriended by Rodin.

She married the Antarctic explorer Captain Robert Scott on 2 September 1908. In 1910, she accompanied her husband to New Zealand to farewell him on his journey to the South Pole. In February 1913, while sailing back to New Zealand to greet him on his return, she learned in mid-ocean of his death in Antarctica in March 1912.

5 Comments

  1. Very nice poem-post Cindy.

    I remember learning about Scotts’ expedition in high school History classes. And also recall thinking how horrible it must have been for him to discover that even with all the effort and hardships, Amundsen got to the Pole before him.

    Curious as to why you chose him and his wife as subjects/a topic for a poem?

  2. Thanks for the comment Rainman.

    Finding a subject for a poem is sometimes quite random. The trigger here for me was the concept of ‘snowblindness’ and the final closing of the eyes as he died. I had come across reference to Kathleen Scott and liked the romantic notion that Scott would have spent his last thoughts hallucinating about love/Summer. I didn’t want the poem to be sentimental, so balanced the last stanza with ‘male hardness’ of the first part. I hope I was successful.

  3. Hell, i am no poet but even I can appreciate the words TOC. Unlike Rainman there, I didnt have a clue who the poem was about, so thank you for the wikipedia links. Having read a little about him there, the poem makes a lot more sense.

  4. Hi Cindy

    I know this is a really dated post now, but thought you may be interested in this just published image gallery on the National Geographic web site: http://tinyurl.com/yz8n8nl

    It shows images from the Antarctic hut the the Scott expedition used – still remarkably intact (especially the interior) almost a century later.

  5. Thanks Greg!

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