Most of the books on Antarctica that I've read, with first lines or random summaries. And two poems (that I wrote) at the end.

The first book I read was Scott and Amundsen (now reissued as The Last Place on Earth; when I read it, I actually didn't know which one had made it to the pole first, but I thought it was Scott. Propaganda rules ... I liked the book very much, but didn't go seeking further. Years passed. Next I saw Alone in a used book sale (at the library sales in Orleans, Massachusetts) and was grabbed by the title. Read it, liked it, again didn't go any further. More years passed. Then, I randomly picked up Antarctic Navigation by Elizabeth Arthur one day in the Plymouth Public Library. (I read most of it while listening to Madredeus.) And this time I started reading virtually everything on the topic I could find, starting with Arthur's bibliography. (Not to mention all of Arthur's books; I especially recommend Looking for the Klondike Stone.)

Big dead place
  Nicholas Johnson
  Feral House
I stepped from my room in the upper hallway of Dorm 202 to go for a piss
down the hall.

  Sara Wheeler
  Random House
Some years ago, marooned in a small tent close to one of the dynamic ice
streams on the west Antarctic ice sheet, I finished reading _The Worst
Journey in the World_ as a blizzard closed in around our tiny camp.

Greetings from Antarctica
  Sara Wheeler
  Peter Bedrick Books
Antarctica is a continent that sits right at the bottom of the planet.

Skating to Antarctica
  Jenny Diski
  Ecco Press
I am not entirely content with the degree of whiteness in my life.

Antarctica: the last continent
  Kim Heacox
  National Geographic Society

  Kim Stanley Robinson
First you fall in love with Antarctica, and then it breaks your heart.

Time on ice: a winter voyage to Antarctica
  Deborah Shapiro & Rolf Bjelke
Sailing, frozen in on peninsula, sailing back.

Mind over matter
  Ranulph Fiennes
First team to man-haul across the continent.

Terra Incognita: travels in Antarctica
  Sara Wheeler
  Random House
``You wait. Everyone has an Antarctic.'' -- Thomas Pynchon, V.

To Everest via Antarctica
  Robert Mads Anderson
  Stackpole Books
Climbing solo on the highest peak on each continent.

The crystal desert: summers in Antarctica
  David Campbell
  Houghton Mifflin

Antarctica: both Heaven and Hell
  Reinhold Messner
  The Mountaineers
  Jill Neate, tr.
When I set off for the South Pole, my daughter Magdalena could not yet
talk.  When I returned, she asked me lots of questions:
- What did you find down there?
- Infinity.
- What's infinity like?
- White, peaceful, still, and everything moves slowly.
- So is that like Heaven?
- Did you look for Heaven in the Antarctic?
- No, I wasn't looking for anything there, but I discovered white
  infinity there.

  Roland Huntford
This book grew out of my work on _Scott and Amundsen_, for at every
other turn the shadow of Ernest Shackleton fell across my path.

Antarctica, my destiny
  Captain Finn Ronne
  Hastings House
The love of the sea and the spirit of seeking new fields to conquer have
long been a part of my family history.

1910-1916 Antarctic Photographs
  Herbert Ponting & Frank Hurley
  Jeanne Boddington, ed.
  St. Martin's Press
Photographs from
Scott's 1910-1913 Terra Nova expedition (Ponting),
Mawson's 1911-13 Aurora expedition (Hurley),
and Shackleton's 1914-16 Endurance expedition (Hurley).
Often seen cropped in other books.

The worst journey in the world
  Apsley Cherry-Garrard
  Dial Press
Polar exploration is at once the cleanest and most isolated way of
having a bad time which was ever been devised.
If you march your Winter Journeys you will have your reward, so long
as all you want is a penguin's egg.

Heart of the Antarctic
  Ernest Shackleton
  J.B. Lippincott
The story of Shackleton's first expedition (on Nimrod).  He and three
others came within 97 miles of the South Pole before turning back, the
closest anyone had come to the Pole, and the single largest advance on
the Pole ever made.

12may 18may Antarctic odyssey Collier, Graham & Collier, Patricia Graham 6mar00 7mar Endurance, The Alexander, Caroline 28sep 11oct Antarctica Robinson, Kim Stanley 17may99 17may Greetings from Antarctica Wheeler, Sara 17dec 31dec Antarctica, my destiny Ronne, Finn 22apr 25apr Scott's last voyage through the Antarctic camera of Herbert Ponting Savours, Ann, ed. 1apr 5apr 90 degrees south Siple, Paul 27mar 21apr Scott and Amundsen Huntford, Roland 21mar 22mar Antarctica Schultess, Emil 12mar 15mar Below the convergence Gurney, Alan 2mar 5mar Antarctica Porter, Eliot 12feb 15feb Ice, The Pyne, Stephen 30jan 1feb South light Parfit, Michael 26jan 26jan Antarctica Macdonald, Kellie 1jan98 3jan Crossing of Antarctica, The Fuchs, Vivian & Hillary, Edmund 20dec 21dec Walk to the pole, A Mear, Roger & Swan, Robert 30nov 2dec Antarctic navigation Arthur, Elizabeth Alone Byrd, Richard
amundsen -- dec 14, 1911 scott -- jan 12, 1912 dufek -- oct 31, 1956
Manomet, Massachusetts: April 12, 23, May 12, 19, 1998; January 24, 1999 You are my love, my only true love. You are only mine, as I am only yours. The Amundsens arrived 87-odd years ago where? At a spot on your perfect skin predetermined by humanity, and declared it good; the Scotts at the same point a mere month later, died on their return from your nowhere, and declared it heroic. The Dufeks stepped off a plane after 44 years of peace to usher in those ceaseless scientists who came and melted your accumulations of millenial ice, to drink with, wash with, survive with; reaching even here in the highest driest coldest place on the planet: your place. So they've reached their South Pole, and their Geomagnetic Pole, and their Pole of Relative Inaccessibility, and no doubt one day they'll drill through the eons and reach the rock on that one particular point that they're so enamored of, beneath your ever-flowing raiment of ice. But you'll always be Absolutely Inaccessible (except to me, your true love). They can catalog your ice: bergy bits, bergs, drift ice, fast ice, brash ice, pack ice, shelf ice, barrier ice. The polar plateau. Make the ever-finer distinctions they need to make. You overwhelm me. I love you in your colors: obsidian black deep green gorgeous lustrous endless endless endless endless endless endless white. You have a living volcano on the edge of your body, pulsing its heat into you, and a necklace of volcanoes past adorning you, katabatic winds tearing off them in lieu of lava, changing you every day; you are as variable as the weather. You go on being you, as I go on being me. How horrible and how delightful it would be, to die not as the Scotts died, stranded in a camp like some tumor on your breast, huddled in some tent-sized space of human environment (that you are transforming into your environment), but to come to you from the north, to come to you, to the idea of south, and embrace you with all of my love, and to feel you embrace me, with all of yours. One wish...
Hull, Massachusetts: May 18, 1999 Here at the bottom of the world there is only one direction if we stick to the surface of this planet, and that is north. Only one way out of here, and I've got to go. Any direction works, as long as I don't stay here, circling within the flags that circumscribe the marker of the pole somewhere underneath. The marker is a spot on the ice, readjusted annually, but the pole stays forever at the end of the earth's rotational axis. Ice flows unceasingly over it, and we are on the ice. A desert of ice is here, a continent of ice, without even the usual amount of air, certainly with nothing at all that could be called warmth, but it calls to me, asks me to journey from these half-buried huts and geodesic domes.