The drafting, publishing and subsequent reproduction of Edward Wilson's evocative and sinisterly premonitory poem, The Barrier Silence, is examined. It was written in October 1911 for Part 3 of the South Polar Times (SPT), Vol. 3, prepared and ‘published’ at Robert Falcon Scott's British Antarctic (Terra Nova) Expedition hut at Cape Evans, Ross Island, shortly before Wilson, Scott and three other members set off on the ill-fated South Pole journey. Wilson contributed most of the illustrative material for all three volumes of the SPT, but this poem is the only written article attributed to him, although it is possible that he was also the author of an anonymous poem. Events that may have influenced Wilson to write his poem are also considered.