The Southern Party (Le Guin). 2016–17. Hand embroidery on linen. 26 x 36.75 in. (66 x 93.3 cm)



Sur, The Compass Rose 
The Southern Party consisted of two sledge teams:
Juana, Dolores, and myself; Carlota, Pepita, and
Zoe. On the twenty-second of December, 1909, we
reached the South Pole. The weather was, as
always, very cruel. Nothing of any kind marked
the dreary whiteness. We discussed leaving some
kind of mark or monument, a snow cairn, a tent
pole and flag, but there seemed no particular
reason to do so.

In 1912 all the world learned that the brave
Norwegian Amundsen had reached the South
Pole. We are old women now, with old husbands,
and grown children, and grandchildren who
might someday like to read about the
Expedition. But they must not let Mr.
Amundsen know! He would be terribly
embarrassed and disappointed. There is no
need for him or anyone else outside the
family to know. We left no footprints, even. 
                            —Ursula K. Le Guin