Soldier and Girl Sleeping signed and dated '42 (lower right), oil on canvas 41 x 51 cm. (16 1/8 x 20 1/8 in.)
Provenance: with The Leicester Galleries, London, 1943 acquired from the above by Sheila Shannon (co editor of Soldiers' Verse), thence by descent
Exhibited: London, The Arts Council of Great Britain, 4 Young British Painters (year unknown), cat.no.16 London, The Leicester Galleries, New Year Exhibition, January 1943 London, Imperial War Museum, William Scott: War Paintings 1942-1946, 1st February - 1st March 1981, cat.no.2
Literature: W.J.Turner and Sheila Shannon (co editors), Soldiers' Verse, Frederick Muller Ltd., London, 1945, p.23
It is late, already, it is night; But still they wait still spin the moments out: There is time yet and they rest Side by side on the hard station bench: For the train will come, will break These two apart and bear the half way.
Parting in love is not so hard a thing, (Leaving with a crystal certitude Wrapping within the pain a kernel joy), As parting in love's echo; For outgoing love bears on its ebbing tide All things away and is more sure In its finality than Death.
These two are sleeping now. She sleeps so lightly Wavering on the further verge of waking; But his stillness hold her firm In the fixed circle of his dream; She lies within cavities of his being The bright imagination of his heart And through his darkened eyes sees not The falling hand of Time, Nor through his sleeping ears can hear The tiger trains prowl in and out.
The sleep: And parting has no time for them Nor place to hurt them in.