Poetry Corner: We Were The Fools Who Could Not Rest

On this day the 27th of January 1820 a Russian expedition led by Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev discovered the continent of Antarctica.

Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen

Von Bellingshausen’s ship was the first to cross the Antarctic Circle since Captain Cook in 1773. He navigated and charted the area extensively and was the first to sight the Antarctic continent. His voyage lasted 2 years and 21 days covering 50,000 miles (80,467 km). His achievements in surveying and mapping the Antarctic were not recognised by Russia for 100 years. You can read more about him and other Polar explorers here.  Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen 

soviet union stamps on polar exploration

Poems by Ernest Shackleton

We Were The Fools Who Could Not Rest

We were the fools who could not rest
In the dull earth we left behind
But burned with passion for the South
And drank strange frenzy from its wind
The world where wise men sit at ease
Fades from our unregretful eyes
And thus across unchartered seas
We stagger on our enterprise

We leave our pleasant homelands (draft)

We leave our pleasant homelands,
for the roaring south east winds,
all words of love and friendship,
for yearning hearts and minds,
for clasps of loving fingers,
dreams must alone


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